Happy #meatlessmonday ! We have been doing Sunday Night Suppers with all the family and it has been a treasure – the conversations, the time around the table visiting and listening to stories, the memories being made that our daughter can look back on, the time with our moms, we are very thankful for. Last night’s meal was made possible when a friend gave me the most beautiful eggplant and zucchini from her garden. What else to make except Ratatouille. Guess where this beautiful dish originated – the South of France?? This dish was vegan before vegan even existed??! So simple, so delicious, and so seasonal using veggies that are at their peak now, this recipe uses my classic marinara sauce made in the @vitamix and then layers mandolin sliced fresh veggies on top.
The base of this Ratatouille is my classic marinara sauce that I make in the Vitamix. One thing I love about my Vitamix is it cuts your prep time immensely for so many dishes. So instead of cutting tomatoes, then olives, then herbs, then onion – you pop it in the Vitamix and pulse and in a matter of minutes you have a sauce so delicious you will want to drink it. The other wonderful thing about preparing a sauce in the Vitamix, the explosion of ingredients together maximizes the flavor beyond your typical stove top sauce. Here is my marinara sauce recipe followed by the Ratatouille recipe:
2 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 cloves garlic
2 1/2 cups fresh tomatoes
1/2 cup kalamata olives
1 shallot or 1/3 cup onion
7-10 basil leaves
3-4 sprigs of fresh oregano, de-stemmed
3-4 sprigs fresh thyme, de-stemmed
In a heavy bottom sauce pan heat olive oil over medium-high heat, saute garlic and reduce heat to medium-low.
In the Vitamix put in tomatoes, olives, onion, and herbs. Pulse 3-5 times until desired consistency is reached. Pour sauce into pan with garlic and bring temperature back up to medium-high. Let bubble them reduce heat to low and let simmer for 10-15 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Ratatouille Recipe, serves 6
4 cups Marinara sauce
1 large zucchini, sliced about 1/4 inch thick or smaller
2 small squash, sliced about 1/4 inch thick or smaller
1 large eggplant, sliced about 1/4 inch thick or smaller
1 large tomato, sliced about 1/4 inch thick or smaller
1 bell pepper, sliced about 1/4 inch thick or smaller
1 onion, sliced about 1/4 inch thick or smaller
Extra virgin olive oil
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Pour marinara sauce in bottom of medium sized heavy bottom pan. Arrange vegetables in a pattern around the perimeter of the pan, then arrange smaller pieces in center. Drizzle the tops the veggies with olive oil. Cover and bake for 50 minutes. Check at 45 minutes just to make sure it isn’t over cooking. Sprinkle with fresh basil and serve.