Ratatouille is a traditional vegetarian dish that often resembles a thick stew and is made with summer vegetables such as eggplant, tomatoes, summer squash, onions. Bell peppers would also be a good addition. It was originally a French Provençal stewed vegetable dish from Nice. Other known names include ratatouille niçoise. The word ratatouille derives expressive forms of the French verb touiller, which means “to stir up”. This was dish was also popularized by Pixar. This recipe follows the deconstructed style of ratatouille perfectly pictured in the Pixar movie. Instead of a mixed stew with chopped veggies it is layered. I also utilize the crockpot or slow-cooker to achieve the perfect level of tenderness without sacrificing the perfect layered plating.
I suggest using the freshest local and organic ingredients available in your area. In this recipe I use japanese eggplants, zucchini, and tomatoes grown in here in Hamakua and onions are from a neighboring island. I also use whatever herbs are growing in my garden. To finish I use a good cheese. My favorite is with Manchego but my hunny likes it most with goat cheese. This layered ratatouille in a crockpot is a beautiful vegetarian dish and you can throw it together in 20 minutes or less.
Recipe for Layered Ratatioulle in a Crockpot
- 2 medium zucchini sliced thin
- 2 medium Japanese eggplants sliced thin
- 3-4 medium tomatoes sliced thin
- 1 onion sliced thin
- 4-6 cloves garlic
- salt about ½ teaspoon
- pepper about ½ teaspoon
- cheese for topping (⅓ cup shredded per/person)
- herbs used in Italian cooking (about 1/4 cup chopped fresh or 1-2 tablespoons dried) like oregano, cuban/mexican oregano, stick oregano, any kind of basil, rosemary, any kind of thyme.
1) First layer the zucchini, eggplant, onion, and tomato in a slow-cooker. I use my food processor to chop all items. It takes much less time than hand chopping.
2) At this point, I grind in a blender (or chop if you prefer) any leftover vegetables, garlic and herbs, salt and pepper.
3) Then simply pour the blended tomato sauce on top.
4) Put the slow cooker on for 6-8 hours, on high for 4 hours (or a combination).
5) Serve the layered ratatouille topped with cheese, and along side pasta, bread, or as a side dish.
Let me know what you think or how you like to make ratatouille : )