Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Oven Roasted Ratatouille with Polenta

Oh, the flavors of summer in the middle of August.  Ripe tomatoes, fresh zucchini, peppers, and basil...perfectly roasted. The flavors get sweet and blend together in this ratatouille recipe.  I love this recipe, because everything blends perfectly together and the ratatouille does not get soupy.  We love it topped on creamy, rich polenta.  This dish spells summertime :)
The recipe is from one of my favorite cookbooks "Simple Suppers" by Moosewood Restaurants.  The recipe it is vegan, but we like to top ours with Paremsiano Regiano {we have to make sure that the girls get their calcium}.  This recipe is as simple as it gets - all you need to do is roughly chop the vegetables.    

Roasted Ratatouille by Moosewood Restaurant in "Simple Suppers"
1 eggplant - peeled, cut into 1" pieces
3 onions - cut into chunks
6 cloves of garlic coarsely chopped
2 peppers [I like red}
2 tomatoes
1-2 zucchinis {the recipe uses one - I like to use one green, and one yellow}
1/3 C Olive Oil
Salt, Pepper to taste
Basil - chopped about a handful or more

- Preheat oven to 450 F
- Toss chopped vegetables into a large bowl, and mix with olive oil as well as a teaspoon of salt
- Pour vegetable mixture into a baking pan; put into the preheated oven

- After 15 minutes turn the vegetables
- Bake for another 20 minutes, toss them around again and bake for another 5 - 10 minutes until done
- Toss it with the chopped fresh basil once it is out of the oven and a little cooled off
- Adjust salt and pepper to taste.

Basic Polenta
One quart of chicken or vegetable broth {I use whatever is left in the cupboard :)} - total of 4 cups
1-1/2 Cups of Polenta (Corn Grits)
Paremsiano Regiano rind - Optional
1/2 C grated Parmesiano Regino - Optional
Salt to taste

1. Bring broth and rind of Parmesiano Reginao - if using - to a slow simmer
2. Slowly pour in polenta meal - while constantly stirring with a wooden spoon
3. Turn down heat - be careful not to burn yourself - and continue to stir the polenta until it has the
    desired consistency {it takes about 20 minutes or so}. Be sure to continue stirring to make sure that
    polenta does not get lumpy
4. Remove from heat and stir in - if using - the grated parmesiano regiano. [I think it gives it a great
    additional flavor and - of course - packs a lot of additional calcium for the girls}
5. Add salt to taste

To serve spoon Polenta onto a plate, top with roasted ratatouille and additional Parmesiano Regiano.


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