This beloved French dish captures the essence of Mediterranean cuisine, featuring a colorful medley of fresh vegetables and aromatic herbs. Imagine savoring tender eggplant, juicy tomatoes, and vibrant bell peppers, simmered together in a fragrant tomato sauce. Our step-by-step recipe will guide you through creating this traditional French masterpiece, allowing you to experience the rustic flavors of Provence right in your own kitchen. Prepare to be transported to the sun-drenched hills of Southern France as you savor each mouthwatering bite of this Classic Ratatouille!
- 1 medium eggplant, cut into 1-inch cubes
- 2 medium zucchini, sliced into rounds
- 1 red bell pepper, seeded and cut into strips
- 1 yellow bell pepper, seeded and cut into strips
- 1 onion, thinly sliced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 4 ripe tomatoes, diced
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- Salt, to taste
- Black pepper, to taste
- Fresh basil leaves, for garnish
- In a large skillet or pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat.
- Add the sliced onion and minced garlic to the skillet. Sauté until the onion turns translucent and the garlic becomes fragrant.
- Add the diced tomatoes and tomato paste to the skillet. Stir well to combine.
- Season the tomato mixture with dried thyme, dried oregano, salt, and black pepper. Mix thoroughly.
- Allow the tomato mixture to simmer for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add the cubed eggplant, sliced zucchini, and bell pepper strips to the skillet. Stir gently to coat the vegetables with the tomato sauce.
- Cover the skillet and let the ratatouille simmer over low heat for approximately 30-40 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender but still hold their shape.
- Stir occasionally to prevent sticking, and adjust the heat as needed.
- Once the ratatouille is cooked, remove it from the heat and let it rest for a few minutes.
- Serve the Classic Ratatouille warm or at room temperature, garnished with fresh basil leaves.
- Enjoy it as a side dish to grilled meats or fish, or as a main course accompanied by crusty bread or cooked grains.