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Ratatouille in Zucchini Cups with Herbal – Garlicky Crumbs

Ratatouille – Summer’s Classic Vegetable Stew

Fall in love with this Provencal Vegetable Stew with bright colors and bold, mellow flavors.

Ratatouille in Zucchini Cups with Herbal - Garlicky Crumbs
Ratatouille in Zucchini Cups with Herbal – Garlicky Crumbs
A Summer stovetop stew with local eggplant, zucchini, heirloom tomatoes, shallots, garlic and herbs
A Summer stovetop stew with local eggplant, zucchini, heirloom tomatoes, shallots, garlic and herbs

A wonderful vegetable stew celebrating summer’s splendor. A plethora of eggplant, zucchini and tomatoes simmered with herbs and spices.

Ratatouille in Zucchini Cups with Herbal – Garlicky Crumbs

Ingredients

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil , divided

3 cups eggplant, cubed – farm fresh, choose multi-colors (about 4 small- medium)

¾ cup shallots, peeled, diced 

3 medium fresh garlic cloves, peeled and minced

2 cups fresh zucchini, cubed – farm fresh, choose multi-colors 

1 teaspoon fresh rosemary, chopped

2 bay leaves

1 cup marinara sauce, such as “Rao’s” 

1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar

¼ teaspoon hot pepper flakes, or your favorite red chili powder

¼ teaspoon sea salt

⅛ teaspoon fresh ground black pep;per

½ cup filtered water

1 cup heirloom tomatoes, cubed – large sized, choose multi-colors 

2 tablespoons mixed fresh herb leaves – basil, parsley, thyme or oregano 

Instructions

1

Choose a wide pan to cook in, I like my cast iron, enameled paella pan. Cube the vegetables into 3/4 inch pieces.

2

Heat 1 T. olive oil in the pan over moderate – high heat. Add the eggplant, quickly stir to coat the eggplant. Sauté until golden and caramelized, about 5 minutes. HINT: Now, cover, lower heat and cook until tender, 5 minutes more. This step will give the best flavor and texture.

3

Add the remaining tablespoon of olive oil and the shallots, garlic and zucchini. Stir well and cook until the vegetables have softened, about 10 minutes.
Add the next 8 ingredients (rosemary through filtered water.) Stir well, bring to a boil, then cover and lower to a simmer.
Simmer the stew for 20 minutes to meld the flavors. Add the heirloom tomatoes and fresh herbs, take off heat and enjoy!

4

Serving Suggestions:
As a side dish, stuff mushrooms, stuff zucchini, (look for 8 balls at farmers’ markets, cut in half) a filling for an omelet, top pasta or noodles, layer in a lasagne, top on garlicky bruschetta, add sliced olives, top with a herb/garlic bread crumb topping, garnish with toasted pine nuts… eat cold!
Add your favorite grains or beans to the ratatouille; top with a creamy or grated cheese and melt gently on top.

5

Stuff Mushrooms or Zucchini:
Clean and core your favorite mushroom. Brush with olive oil, season with salt and pepper. Cook in a hot 400 degree oven for 10-12 minutes until golden. Drain any accumulated juices.
Cut zucchini suitable for stuffing in half. I have used “8 ball” zucchini (round shape.) Scoop out all but 1/2 inch of its wall with a spoon. Steam the zucchini until tender, yet still holds its shape, about 10 minutes.
Stuff Ratatouille into the cavities of the mushrooms or zucchini. Place in a baking pan to hold, reheat if necessary.
Top with Herb & Garlicky Bread Crumbs and broil until golden.

6

Quick Herb & Garlicky Crumbs:
3 T. dry bread crumbs (regular of gluten-free)
1 T. fruity extra virgin olive oil
1 medium garlic clove, peeled and grated
2 t. minced parsley
1 pinch salt & pepper
2 T. grated parmesan reggiano cheese (optional)
~ Mix all together, let sit for 15 minutes, top the ratatouille broil until golden.

This recipe can not be reproduced without the permission of its author, Karen Sheer

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