The City Magazine Since 1975

Ratatouille à la Grandmère

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  • 1/2 cup + 2 Tbs. olive oil
  • 1 1/4 cup chopped red onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tsp. each dried oregano, thyme, and basil
  • 1 Tbs. chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 1/2 lbs. eggplant
  • 4 cups sliced zucchini
  • 4 cups sliced yellow squash
  • 3/4 lb. whole green beans
  • 28 oz. canned Italian whole plum tomatoes
  • 3 Tbs. ketchup
  • 2 Tbs.Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp coarsely ground black pepper

In a 10- to-12-inch sauté pan, cook the onions, garlic, and herbs in two tablespoons of the olive oil until the onion is translucent. Remove the herbs and onion and set it aside. Peel eggplant and cut into 1/2-inch slices and then into chunks. Slice the zucchini and yellow squash into 1/4- inch rounds. Drain the tomatoes, reserving the juice. Add the remaining olive oil to the pan as needed, and sauté the eggplant, squash, and green beans separately. Arrange each of the sautéed vegetables and the tomatoes in layers in a large earthenware or ceramic casserole, with the onion-herb mixture sprinkled between each vegetable layer. Deglaze the pan with the juice remaining from the canned tomatoes. Flavor it with the ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, salt, and pepper. Cook down until it thickens slightly, stirring constantly, and pour it over the dish. Bake at 350°F for at least one hour. This is even better reheated. It can be served hot or at room temperature and freezes well.