Minnesota Cooking: Mock Ratatouille

Updated on September 9, 2017

Almost Ratatouille

The other day, I was offered this recipe by my hubby's mom. It was simple and fast. She insisted that it was very delicious.

Well, I cooked it up and tasted it, and she was right. It was pretty good. So, as I diced and heated and sautéed and simmered, I took pictures for you.

A friend of mine, years ago, had told me about ratatouille. But this recipe is a little different, since the recipes for ratatouille include zucchini. This recipe does not.

Cook Time

Prep time: 20 min
Cook time: 20 min
Ready in: 40 min
Yields: Serves one person with leftovers.

Ingredients

  • 1 eggplant, peeled and cubed
  • 1 onion, sliced thin
  • 1 green pepper, diced
  • 1 teaspoon garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 4 tomatoes, diced
  • 1 tablespoon Lawry's, seasoned salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon Black Pepper, fresh ground
  • 1/2 teaspoon optional basil leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon optional oregano leaves
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Instructions

  1. Put oil in pan, add teaspoon of minced garlic. Add diced onions. Sprinkle with Lawry's and black pepper.
  2. Peel and chop eggplant into cubes, dice tomato, mince green pepper. Place eggplant into pan, then add tomato and green pepper. Sprinkle with Lawry's again.
  3. Heat covered for 20 minutes. You can simmer for an additional 10 minutes if you want.

Cubing Your Vegetables

Cubing is easy. You simply make a flat side and place it face down on the flat side. Then, make slices across the width of your finger. Then, turn it sideways and cut the other way. Then, flip sideways and gently slice across your pieces.

It sounds hard until you actually try it. I have included pictures of how I diced my tomato and the other vegetables are cut the same.

Cubing Vegetables

Click thumbnail to view full-size
slice off stem endPlace on flat side and slice acrossturn sideways and cut acrossflip again and cut across againSee. Easy dicing.all done
slice off stem end
slice off stem end
Place on flat side and slice across
Place on flat side and slice across
turn sideways and cut across
turn sideways and cut across
flip again and cut across again
flip again and cut across again
See. Easy dicing.
See. Easy dicing.
all done
all done

Peel Eggplant and Dice

In our house, we prefer our eggplant peeled before we dice it. The peeling is done with a regular peeler, like you use for peeling potatoes. Then, slice the ends off. Then, cut the eggplant into finger width cubes.

The eggplant does darken as it sits. Don't be alarmed. It just does.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Eggplant should be shiny. Don't eat a dull eggplant. Peel.Discard endsChop into cubes.
Eggplant should be shiny. Don't eat a dull eggplant.
Eggplant should be shiny. Don't eat a dull eggplant.
Peel.
Peel.
Discard ends
Discard ends
Chop into cubes.
Chop into cubes.

Oil on Medium Heat

Add your oil to your pan. Put the garlic in the oil. Add your onions. Let caramelize while you dice the rest of your vegetables.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
oil in pan, medium heatonionsminced garlic
oil in pan, medium heat
oil in pan, medium heat
onions
onions
minced garlic
minced garlic

Add Eggplant Next

Then, add the Eggplant first, stir around in the oil to coat, then dump the rest of the vegetables on. In my case, the tomatoes and peppers were the last to go in.

Then, it's just a matter of covering the pan and letting it all cook for 20 minutes at which time, I turned the heat to a simmer and let the flavors merge.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Add eggplant to onions. Stir to coat with oil.add tomatoes and peppers to eggplantCover and cook for 20 minutesAfter 20 minutes, turn down to simmer.
Add eggplant to onions. Stir to coat with oil.
Add eggplant to onions. Stir to coat with oil.
add tomatoes and peppers to eggplant
add tomatoes and peppers to eggplant
Cover and cook for 20 minutes
Cover and cook for 20 minutes
After 20 minutes, turn down to simmer.
After 20 minutes, turn down to simmer.
Click thumbnail to view full-size
Sprinkle individual dish with parmesan cheese sprinkles or shreds.Finished dish.Bite.
Sprinkle individual dish with parmesan cheese sprinkles or shreds.
Sprinkle individual dish with parmesan cheese sprinkles or shreds.
Finished dish.
Finished dish.
Bite.
Bite.

Parmesan Cheese

When I ladled some into a bowl, I added some Parmesan Cheese to the top. I like the shreds, but the grated was fine.

The eggplant had tenderized and the flavors of the different ingredients, all merged together to make this tasty dish. Bite for bite it was amazing.

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    • firstcookbooklady profile image
      Author

      Char Milbrett 5 months ago from Minnesota

      Thanks for the comment, Larry Rankin.

    • Larry Rankin profile image

      Larry Rankin 5 months ago from Oklahoma

      Always looks so good.

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