Barbecuey Ratatouille

July 14, 2009 at 11:05 pm 11 comments

The other day Thing 1 began screaming. It was that shrill kid cry that adults can never quite identify.  I can’t stand that kind of exclamation it is either glee, cackling or pure pain and no one can ever tell which until you can get eyes on the “victim”!   Sometimes it is as simple an answer as, “the baby smiled at me” other times as innocent and understandable, in my case, as “I saw a BEE!”  I could not see the kids from where I sat in my garden of weedin’ so when Thing 1 screamed I expected the worst.

He came running with his hands over his eyes sputtering all sorts of nonsense that I couldn’t make sense of.

“Are you bleeding?” I blurted.

“No,” he managed.

My kids know that my first response is likely to be one of two things: Is there blood, or Is something dead (namely a pet or woodland creature).  You’d think by now they would come yelling, “No blood mom!”

Finally I got some sense out of my oldest son, whom I’m constantly having to remind myself is still only seven.  “Bubba (who is only 2) threw sand in my eye and on my head!”

The boy accused came toddling over with a look of consternation and stood a little distance off assessing the situation.  I helped Thing 1 to get his eyes to tear and had to practically put him in a straight jacket to keep him from clawing at it.  Once I had that situation fairly handled I put my attention to the discipline of my youngest son.

“Bubba,” I frowned, “it’s not nice to throw sand.  Tell your brother you are sorry!”

He came closer and as I looked I could see that in his own hair was at least twice the sand that the older son had.  Hmmm I pondered.  This little boy dumped sand all over his own head and then got a brilliant idea to throw sand onto his brothers head? Or could it just be that all was not as it seemed.

Upon further investigation I’m sure you can guess how the real story played out and in this instance there were no innocent parties.

Thankfully no one found any creatures in the woods. 

What does all this have to do with dinner?  I think you will be able to follow my logic if you’ve seen Ratatouille.

Ever since watching the Disney movie Ratatouille my boys have been bugging me to make the dish it is named for.  When they first asked, I hadn’t a clue what it was but after perusing the Internet for recipes, watching cooking videos and consulting my culinary expert (my husband) I believe all I have left to say is Eureka! 

In honor of sand and sun I’ve been spending my days outside and my cooking efforts have maily centered around the grill so my challenge was to make Ratatouille without heating up the house or using tons of dishes.  The following recipe is my solution to both.  I reinvented this French dish, a peasants vegetable stew and even the “peasants” in my household couldn’t get enough!

Barbecuey Ratatouille:

BBQYRatatouille

Do I really have to go there?  (Shopping List):

Ratatouille is a peasants stew made using various veggies and sometimes served over rice.  You are sticking with the nature of the dish if you include eggplant and zuccini along with any other vegetable that you have on hand or can find cheap. Here are a few items you need as well.

  • olive oil
  • tomato sauce
  • garlic

If I can do it you can do it! (The Recipe):

If you will be serving your Ratatouille with rice now is an excellent time to begin cooking it.

After you have the rice on, gather all your veggies.

various veggies

I used 1 eggplant, 2 med zucchini, 4 small potatoes, 4 small sweet peppers (or 1 large bell), 1 red onion, 1 tomato.  Other vegetables sometimes used are mushrooms, chickpeas, okra etc.

Juline the eggplant, zucchini and peppers. Cut the potatoes into bite sized pieces and the tomato into wedges.  Slice the onion into rings and place over everything in a disposable tin foil roasting pan.

julien veggies

After you are done slice and dicing, fire up the BBQ.

Once you have all the veggies arranged drizzle olive oil generously over everything.

Place 6 cloves of garlic (peeled and sliced) in a tin foil square and drizzle with olive oil then tightly seal the square and put it in the corner of your roasting pan. Cover the pan with another roaster or tin foil and place on the grill.

Grill the covered veggies over medium heat approximately 20 min.  You will have to check from time to time as some vegetables will cook more quickly.  Flip any that are cooking unevenly and rearrange as necessary.  I burnt a few to the bottom of the pan but we decided we all liked the Cajun flavor!add sauce

Once your veggies are cooked through remove any tough skins (I took the skin off the eggplant) and anything burnt beyond recognition. :)  Cut everything into bite size pieces and toss into a nonstick skillet over med heat.  Immediately pour in 1 cup of tomato sauce or your favorite spaghetti sauce and toss to coat.  Simmer just until heated through and serve over a bed of rice.

allons, mangez !

This has been another recipe for the “What’s for Dinner Wednesday Blog Carnival” Hosted by the Gluten Free Homemaker. Thanks for stopping and check out more great ideas here!

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100 Clearing up 52-54 and how my husband is involved in homeschooling.

11 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Carrie  |  July 15, 2009 at 1:41 am

    It looks absolutely de-light-ful! It makes me hungry just looking at it!

    Reply
  • 2. Linda  |  July 15, 2009 at 8:14 am

    That’s a great idea to use the grill. I usually make it in the oven where it bakes for 1 1/2 hrs. Not something I want to do in the summer!

    Reply
  • 3. Linda  |  July 15, 2009 at 8:17 am

    P.S. When my youngest was very little he used to bite his brothers. It hurt sooo bad they gave a scream that I always recognized. Even now when they are big I can’t always tell if someone is hurt or not. Thankfully, we don’t have biting problems anymore.

    Reply
  • 4. naomig  |  July 15, 2009 at 9:27 am

    Yeah, I know exactly what scream you’re talking about. It sends me into a panic every time–fear of the unknown, I guess.

    That dish looks SO good!

    Reply
  • 5. glutenfree4goofs  |  July 15, 2009 at 10:44 am

    This is a great dish for harvest because it uses all sorts of veggies! You won’t have to run next time someone bring zucchini to work! :) A small correction… I have now seen a couple recipes that do not have eggplant so I guess the tomato sauce and zucchini are the ratatouille signature. I had never tried eggplant until this dish! Now I can’t wait for the one’s in my garden! FYI don’t use the Japanese eggplant (long skinny).

    Reply
  • 6. Diane-thewholegang  |  July 15, 2009 at 2:52 pm

    That looks really good. I didn’t use to be a fan of ratatouille but I didn’t eat vegetables again. This might be a great dish to make with this week’s CSA. However yours looks so good I’m ready to eat now.

    Reply
  • 7. Sophie  |  July 15, 2009 at 6:10 pm

    I love any dish that combines this many veggies in a flavorful way! Yum!

    Reply
  • 8. Amy Green - Simply Sugar & Gluten-Free  |  July 15, 2009 at 6:43 pm

    I love ratatouille. I make it, and honestly, I can’t wait to eat the left-overs. It’s so, so flavorful and if you’ve never had it you must try it. Every minute spent cooking is worth it. I make mine in the oven after cooking it on the stove top first…it’s a process but, oh how I love it!!! It’s as satisfying as a meat stew…thanks for sharing this. I am going to have to make some soon.

    Reply
  • 9. Brian  |  July 16, 2009 at 10:47 am

    This looks great! I’ve never made ratatouille, but I like the sound of it. I’ll have to try this soon with all the fresh vegetables available now.

    Reply
  • 10. Lisa's Chaos  |  July 16, 2009 at 10:49 am

    What I want to know is after all that begging, did they eat it? And I’ve heard the sand saga too many times – kids! :)

    Reply
    • 11. glutenfree4goofs  |  July 16, 2009 at 2:50 pm

      Yep they gobbled it up saying “this is good, this is SO SO good!”

      Reply

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Us and Our Thinglets

MATT - Food Creativity Consultant, Joyful Partner in Crime JESSIE - Photographer, Amateur Food Critic, Blog Author CAPTAIN OBVIOUS - formerly Thing 1 Thing 1 SCARFUNKLE - formerly Thing 2 IMG_3466 LOUD KIDDINGTON - formerly THE BUBBA 3 PEE WEE MINI ME BORN March 8, 2011

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Sourdough Update

Many of you have been checking back for results on my sourdough creation. At the moment it is still a science experiment, but a happy, bubbly experiment. Never fear, recipes will be here! I did make a beautiful, moist and delicious loaf of sourdough using yeast and a myriad of other ingredients but I'm still trying to create something more user friendly. Wouldn't it be awesome to have a starter on the counter that you could add 4 things to and have a loaf of bread by dinner? Mmmm! Attempt #1 - rose well but resulted in a dense chewy blob Attempt #2 - rose ok but was thin and lifeless then fell and another dense (not so chewy) blob Attempt #3 - to the dogs! Attempt #4 - A sourdough pancake success see post under what's for breakfast gluten-free goof? Ongoing - I've tried several more times and am going to try a completely different approach on the bread starting this week. (Mar 18). My sourdough is still happy on my counter and it makes great pancakes but it's a lot of work just for pancakes. Keep checking! April Update: She is still kickin and I'm still workin on a yeast free, gluten free sourdough loaf! May Update: My sourdough "pet" has been dried and retired until next baking season. I've traded her in for a hotter model, the BBQ! :)
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