Ratatouille is a classic French peasant dish that originated in Provence. It’s a stew of zucchini, eggplant, tomato, pepper, onion and fresh herbs cut into small pieces.
In the Disney film of the same name, the rat Remy, together with chef Alfredo Linguini, cooks the perfect ratatouille for critic Anton Ego. We see that in the film no cubes are cut, but perfectly even slices of the vegetables that are laid out in layers.
After some research, we discover that none other than three-star chef Thomas Keller created the recipe for this film, inspired by the “Confit Byaldi” by French chef Michel Guérard.
Of course, you can’t stack the peppers in this variant very nicely, which is why we roast them and hide them in small cubes together with tomatoes under the other vegetables. It takes a lot of work to make the perfect ratatouille, but it certainly steals the show.
Ratatouille is a versatile dish that can be served as a side dish, main dish or even as a filling for omelettes or pancakes.
It’s often eaten in the summer when the main vegetables are in season, but it can also be prepared all year round. Although there are traditional recipes for ratatouille, there are also variations and you can give the dish your own twist.
Recipes with ratatouille
- 10 plum tomatoes ripe
- 2 red peppers
- 5 garlic cloves chopped
- 1 large onion chopped
- 3 sprigs rosemary
- 5 sprigs thyme
- 3 bay leaves
- 1 zucchini green
- 1 yellow zucchini
- 1 eggplant
- 3 tbsp red wine vinegar
- olive oil
- black pepper freshly ground
- fleur de sel
- Preheat the oven to 150˚C.
- Stick a meat fork into the pepper and roast it over a gas flame until the outside has turned completely black. Do this with the other pepper as well. Rub the peel off with a knife under the tap until the peel has completely disappeared. Cut in half, remove the seeds and cut the flesh into small cubes.
- Bring to a boil in a large pot of water. Cut the tomatoes crosswise and cut out the top. Immerse 5 tomatoes, one at a time, in the water for 25 seconds and then immediately scoop into ice-cold water. Remove the peel with a sharp knife. Cut the tomatoes into quarters and cut out the seeds. Cut the flesh into cubes.
- Chop the thyme and rosemary. Fry the onion with half the garlic in a little olive oil until translucent. Add half the thyme, the rosemary and the bay leaf. Sweat briefly and then add the pepper and tomato. Let it fry for another 4 minutes.
- Cut the zucchini and eggplant into thin slices on the mandolin. Cut the rest of the tomatoes into thin slices as well.
- Spoon the pepper mixture into a round baking dish and smooth it out. Reserve two large tablespoons of this mixture. Layer a slice of tomato, green zucchini, yellow zucchini and eggplant on top of the mixture in an overlapping manner. Make a beautiful pattern this way. Repeat this until a nice pattern is created. Mix the reserved herbs and garlic with a generous dash of olive oil, pepper and fleur de sel and brush the vegetables with it. Cover the dish with aluminum foil and place in the preheated oven for 60 minutes.
- Remove the foil, brush again with the herb oil and place the ratatouille under the grill of the oven for another 8 minutes so that they get extra color.
- Mix the remaining herb oil with the paprika mixture and the red wine vinegar. Spoon over the ratatouille just before serving.