Saturday, August 7, 2010

Grilled Ratatouille

I suppose there are as many recipes for Ratatouille as there are cooks to prepare it. If you didn't know this very popular French dish before, you probably do now from the movie of the same name.

Ratouille is a wonderful dish to make in the summer, while all the vegetables are abundant and at the peek of freshness, which is also when they are the most affordably priced. I went on a trip to the Farmers Market for my vegetables. I bought 8 Japanese eggplants, 6 summer squash, 3 large Vidalia onions, 1 each red and green bell peppers, and 4 very large and perfectly ripe and lucious tomatoes, all for under $8. And I made a huge pot of Ratatouille.

I posted a version of Ratatouille with roasted tomatoes, which are delicious, last year, but it was already into the fall when I made it. Right now, I'm not roasting anything! For this version, I grilled most of the vegetables.

Making Ratatouille does involve quite a lot of vegetable chopping, so I hope you have a good cutting board, a sharp knife, and enjoy the quiet meditative process of working with fresh, lovely vegetables.

Grilled Ratatouille
3 large onions, roughly chopped
3- 4 plump cloves garlic, chopped
2 bell peppers, any color, quartered, seeds removed
8 Japanese eggplant, split in half lengthwise
6 summer squash, split in half lengthwise
4 very large ripe tomatoes, peeled and coarsely chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 Tbsp. fresh rosemary, finely chopped
Olive Oil

In a large soup pot, cook onions, in olive oil, over medium low heat, until tender. Meanwhile, drizzle peppers, eggplant, and squash with olive oil, and salt and pepper them. Grill until tender. Chop the grilled vegetables to desired size and add to the pot with the onions. Add the garlic. Stir together, and simmer for a few minutes. Finally add the chopped tomatoes and the fresh rosemary. Cover and simmer for about 30 minutes. Taste and adjust seasonings.

Serve with French bread and brie. Ratatouille is also delicious with steak, and equally satisfying with brown rice. It is good hot, cold, or at room temperature, and the flavor improves after a couple of days of refrigeration.


  1. This does look good, but honestly me and eggplant are not the best of friends. Is Japanese eggplant milder in flavor? Or if you have another suggestion for a substitute.....I guess then it would not be Ratatouille

  2. We are big fans of grilled veggies in our home and this sounds mouthwatering delicious! What a great way to take advantage of all the beautiful vegetables available right now. Serving it with brie and french bread had me almost drooling!

  3. What a delectable summer meal. I love grilled vegetables & would never have thought of using them in ratatouille. Thanks for the inspiration!