I am crazy about movies.....I can watch an entire movie just for one particular scene I love....for example....Gladiator...I can watch the movie for that one single dialogue that I am just crazy about...the part where Ruselle Crowe turns around and faces the king and says "My name is Maximus Decimus Meridius. Commander of the Armies of the North, General of the Felix Legions, loyal servant to the true emperor, Marcus Aurelius. Father to a murdered son, husband to a murdered wife. and I will have my vegeance , in this life or the next".....That is one hell of a dialogue....well similarly....I can watch the movie 'Ratatouille' for that one single scene where Remy the rat makes ratatouille for the infamous brutal critic Anton Ego.....just one bite and he is taken back to his childhood....to the kitchen where his mother makes ratatouille for him.
I have never thought of making ratatouille until I went for the French cuisine demo at Toscano....everyone has their own version of Ratatouille.....in Toscano they showed us the pan roasted method...I was not for it coz whenever I close my eyes and think of ratatouille all I can see is Remy the rat layering those delicate slices of zucchini, yellow squash and aubergines on a bed of fresh tomato puree....and I knew my Ratatouille should look something like that.
This dish is nothing fancy...very simple comfort food.....a good accompaniment with pasta.
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- 1/2 Zucchini
- 1/2 Yellow Squash
- 2 small Aubergines
- 1/2 Red pepper
- 5 to 6 fresh Basil Leaves
- 2 tbsp Olive oil
- 1/2 Onion,chopped
- 3 to 4 cloves Garlic, crushed
- Salt to taste
- freshly ground Pepper to taste
For tomato puree
- 4 medium size Tomatoes
- 3 cups water
- Make tomato puree - -Boil 3 cups of water, while the water is coming to boil, make a small 'X' on the tomatoes. Drop all the tomatoes into boiling water for few seconds(blanching). Remove from hot water as soon as the skin around the 'X' curls up or loosens. Dip the hot tomatoes into cold water to stop the tomatoes from cooking further. Peel the skin of all the tomatoes and keep aside.You can remove the seed and pulp, but I used the whole tomatoes to make puree.Keep this aside.
- Preheat oven to 200 degree C.
- Slightly grease a round or oval oven safe dish, pour the freshly prepared tomato puree into it,add in the chopped onion,basil leaves and crushed garlic.Season well with salt and pepper,add 1 tbsp olive oil and mix.
- Thinly slice the zucchini,yellow squash,aubergines and red pepper.
- Place one layer of red pepper on the tomato puree(you can layer it along with other veggies,but I preferred this method)
- Now lay the zucchini,yellow squash and aubergines on the red peppers in a circle.
- Pour 1 tbsp of olive oil on top of the veggies,sprinkle some salt and pepper.Cover with butter paper (as shown below)
- Bake in preheated oven for 45 minutes.
- Serve hot with pasta or cous cous.