It is Secret Recipe Club reveal day! Secret Recipe Club is a really fun way to explore new blogs. Each month, the participants are assigned someone else's blog to secretly stalk and on reveal day, we share our recipes and are finally allowed to tell our new friend how much we love their blog.
This month, I was assigned Finding Joy in My Kitchen, a blog written by a lovely lady who goes by the pseudonym "SnoWhite." She and her now husband learned to cook wholesome, budget-friendly meals as students, in part as a way to manage her food allergy, and SnoWhite now uses her blog as a way to document her adventures in the kitchen. She does meal plans (something I really, really need to get better at) and is quite prolific, with tons of easy, delicious recipes to choose from!
In the end, I decided to make Remy's Ratatouille (named of course after the star of Pixar's movie). In part, I picked it because it looked so cool. The other reason I chose this recipe was that over the past month, I've seen a bunch of takes on ratatouille and I have been dying to make a version myself. The dish turned out beautifully and of course, it was delicious too! This would make a great side dish at a dinner party. The only thing that I would change is the eggplant. You will see below that I have added instructions to salt the eggplant and let it sit for a bit before assembling the casserole. I find that helps reduce the bitterness that sometimes comes from roasting eggplant. Otherwise, this is definitely a dish that I will make again!
Remy's RatatouilleAdapted from Finding Joy in My Kitchen (originally adapted from Smitten Kitchen)
1 medium eggplant
1 medium bell pepper
1 large tomato
1 medium zucchini
1 medium summer squash
2 teaspoon olive oil
1 cup tomato sauce
2 tablespoons red wine (optional)
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
Salt and pepper
Begin by slicing your eggplant, bell pepper, tomato, zucchini and summer squash into very thin slices. This would be easiest with a mandolin cutter.
Lay the eggplant on some paper towels and sprinkle it with salt. Cover with more paper towels and let it sit for 10-15 minutes. (This will ensure the eggplant isn't bitter).
In a large oval baking dish (approximately 10 inches in length), pour 1 tsp. olive oil, minced garlic, tomato sauce and wine. Stir together and spread over the base of the dish.
Layer the veggies in the dish. To do so, pick a location along the outside edge of the dish to start, and layer the zucchini, tomato, eggplant, bell pepper, summer squash (I used extra peppers in place of the squash). Repeat layers until you have the entire dish filled around. Then, fill in the center of the dish. Drizzle the remaining olive oil on top, then sprinkle with salt, pepper, and oregano.
Cover the dish – using a cookie sheet, parchment paper or foil. Bake at 375 for 45 minutes. If you use foil or parchment paper, do not tightly seal the dish, you want the steam to escape.
Remove the dish from the oven and shred some Parmesan cheese over the top of the veggies. Return the dish to the oven, uncovered, and bake for an additional 5-7 minutes until cheese is melted.
Serve as a side or with rice or quinoa as a main.