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Monday, May 28, 2018

12 Step Ratatoulli

It was some leftover frozen squash and chayote that made me want to make a Ratatouille and it turned into an adventure.

As usual, I researched Ratatouille recipes. I found several. Some had ingredients I did not recognize. Others seemed complicated, then others were similar but SimplyRecipes's recipe while it had a lot of steps seemed straightforward.

Typically, I never have all the ingredients and have to get inventive.

The original recipe called for 1 pound of this or that. What was that?

I have a minimum amount of kitchen devices, so, no scale. So, I used a measurement conversion site (Source: Calculator-Coverter) and 1 pound was about 2 cups. The recipe was designed for 6-8 servings; I cut it in half since it's usually just me.

It turns out using 1/2 of some of the items equals one cup, or I used the whole vegetable. 

Caution: Careful using links, I am not sure they are all safe.


12 Step Ratatoulli
(Adapted from: https://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/dads_ratatouille/)


Ingredients:

1/2 medium-large white onion, diced
2 cloves of garlic, diced
1/2 Zucchini, diced
1 Chayote, chopped
1 Patty pan Squash, chopped
1/2 Green bell pepper, diced
1/2 Red bell pepper, diced
1 Medium eggplant, chopped

Olive oil for cooking
1/2 heaping Teaspoon dry Rosemary
1 heaping Teaspoon dry Thyme
1 cube tomato bouillon
4 dashes of red pepper sauce
1 Cup Canned tomatoes, diced
Salt (optional)


Equipment:

1 medium-large pot
1 skillet
1 sharp knife for slicing, dicing and chopping
1 slotted spoon
1 colander
1 cutting board
1 cup
2 teaspoons
1 serving dish or storage container 


Process:

You will be preparing and sauteing each vegetable separately.
Sauté means: to fry (food, such as small pieces of meat or vegetables) in a small amount of fat until golden, (Source: Merriam-Webster Dictionary).
You may need to add extra oil to the skillet as you go. Also sautéing time will vary. General times are 5-15 minutes.

1. Dice onion and garlic.

2. Add oil to skillet, sauté onions and garlic.
Chop zucchini while onions and garlic are sautéing.
Remove onions and garlic from skillet with a slotted spoon, add to large pot.


3. Sauté zucchini. 
Chop patty pan and chayote squash while zucchini is sautéing. (I used my frozen leftover patty pat squash and chayote.)
Remove zucchini from skillet, add to pot.



4. Sauté squash.
Dice bell peppers and chop eggplant while squash is sautéing.
Remove squash from skillet, add to pot.



5. Sauté bell peppers, and eggplant. Remove from skillet, add to pot.



6. Put bouillon cube into 1 cup water.

7. Crush Rosemary and Thyme in your palm and add to pot. Add red pepper sauce and bouillon to pot. Stir well.



8. Heat mixture to boiling, lower to simmer, cook for 30 minutes.

9. Pour mixture into a colander and quickly place the pot underneath the colander to catch the juices. Let the juices drain. Stir to get the juices to continue to drain. Pour juices into the skillet. Pour the mixture back into the pot.




10. Cook juices until it is reduced to a glaze. Cook on medium-high. This can take 15-30 minutes or more. It goes faster on high.
Note: I use a hotplate and the various temperatures are difficult to achieve.


11. Chop tomatoes. Add tomatoes to vegetable mixture in pot. Stir well.

12. Return juice glaze to pot. Stir well. Heat mixture until tomatoes are warm.


Serve Ratatouille warm.



OMG, This is wonderful. I don't think I have ever made a recipe with so many ingredients or steps.

My addition of chayote and patty pan squash did not alter the taste.

Yummmmm!


I like this recipe even though it involves many steps and ingredients. I like cutting the individual vegetables and then sautéing them. Each step gave me time to prepare the next vegetable and clean up as needed but it took me hours to complete. So, this will be a Sunday cooking marathon dish.

In addition, I had very little food waste.

While writing this blog, I did a little research into squash and learned Zucchini and Chayote are a type of squash and the squash I buy is a scallop or patty pan squash. This has opened my eyes, I never knew there were so many varieties of squash.



Zucchini Squash

 
(Source: https://www.burpee.com/vegetables/squash/squash-burpees-best-hybrid-prod003504.html)



Chayote Squash

(Source: https://www.plattershare.com/)


Scallop/Patty Pan Squash

 
(Source: https://weirdvegetables.blogspot.mx/search?q=chayote)


Other Sources:

Foodofy.com
http://www.foodofy.com/how-to-identify-squash-different-squash-types-you-didnt-know-about.html

Wikipedia.org
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cucurbita

University of Illinois Extension
https://extension.illinois.edu/veggies/ssquash.cfm

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