You know those bowls of veggies that sell on the market for a pound a bowl? Well, after buying a glut of tomatoes and aubergines I decided to have a go at making my own ratatouille. It was, shall we say a roaring success (2 people, 2 spoons, no problem).
Today my sister asked for the recipe, so I thought it was a good time to try and remember the ingredients and method!
This is a glorious way to use up lots of leftover vegetables – I missed out courgettes in this version, but they can easily be added with the aubergines and tomatoes. This goes brilliantly with some oily fish or teamed with brown rice and spoon of thick Greek yoghurt.
As for the health benefits – tomatoes are a super source of lycopene, a powerful antioxidant that can help to protect against cancers and even sun damage. Our bodies absorb much more lycopene when tomatoes are cooked, and served with some fat (like oil) making this recipe perfect for supercharging your antioxidant intake.
- 2 large aubergines
- 4-5 red bell peppers
- 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil
- salt and pepper
- pinch oregano
- 1 onion, sliced
- 3 cloves of garlic, chopped
- about 300 grams of baby plum tomatoes
- 150ml water
- pinch sugar
- handful of chopped fresh parsley to serve (Greek yoghurt optional)
- Heat your oven to around 200c / 400F. Deseed and slice the peppers into thick strips. Top and tail the aubergine, slice lengthways into thick moon shapes. Tip into a large baking tray, add a generous tablespoon of olive oil, the oregano and a shake of salt and black pepper. Toss with your hands to coat the vegetables with the oil and seasoning.
- Place the vegetables in the oven and roast for around 45-50 minutes until the peppers are super soft and the aubergines are gooey – give them a stir mid way to loosen everything up and make sure the heats gets around evenly.
- Whilst the vegetables are roasting, get on and make the sauce. Heat a tablespoon of oil in a large sauce pan and gently fry off the onion and garlic for a few minutes. Add the tomatoes (no need to slice) and the water and then turn up the heat and stick on a lid until everything is bubbling fiercely. You want to cook the tomatoes until they burst and become pulpy,turning into a sauce – around 20 minutes or so. You want to get to something which is the consistency of a thick pasta sauce.
- Add a pinch of sugar (this really brings out the flavour) to the tomatoes season as needed.
- Once the sauce is ready and the veggies are almost done, take the baking tray from the oven and pour the sauce into the baking tray then using a wooden spoon stir everything together making sure you give the bottom of the pan a good scrape to get all the delicious bits into the sauce.
- Return to the oven for another five minutes or so, then transfer to a bowl and scatter with parsley. Serve with a good dollop of yoghurt.