Aug 28, 2014

One Pot Ratatouille

No big secret... I am not a salad lover.
Makes me feel like a goat. Just sittin'... aaand chewin'... and chewin' some more.
And yes, I could douse the mix in salad dressing, but doesn't that defeat the purpose?!

I do, however, love vegetables. Sauteed, roasted, broiled, bbq'd, steamed, boiled, and so on... fried too of course. But then again, you could fry a boot and I would eat it ;) lol

So, here then, is my mom's recipe for an all-in-one-pot ratatouille. What I love about this one is how flexible the recipe can be. She would always add a potato to it. I found some cabbage in the fridge and decided to add that before it found its way into the garbage. Sweet potatoes, mushrooms and any other kinds of veggies you love work really well here. You can also add more of one vegetable than another if you prefer. It's all good, man!

One Pot Ratatouille

What you need:
 - 2 tbsp (or less) canola or olive oil
 - onion, peeled and diced
 - 4-5 carrots, peeled and diced
 - 4 -5 celery stalks, cleaned and diced
 - 3 medium zucchinis, diced
 - 1 tomato, diced
 - 4-5 garlic cloves, finely chopped
 - 1/2 a small head of cabbage, roughly shredded
 - 3/4 cup of your favorite pasta or marinara sauce
 - 1/2 tsp thyme
 - 1/2 tsp basil
 - salt & pepper to taste

What you do:
Get yer pot out and put over a medium heat. Add the oil, onions, carrots and celery and let them saute together for about 10 minutes. Keep your eye on them and stir them around while you chop up the rest of the ingredients.

Rule of thumb here (and just basic fyi for cooking like this), always add the harder ingredients to the pot first. They need more time to cook through. For example: carrots take longer to cook than zucchini.
So, now would be a good time to add the eggplant and zucchini...

...followed by the tomato and garlic.

Give them a stir, cover the pot and put the flame on low.

After about 5 minutes, add the cabbage. I would have added it before, but that's how long it took me to get it chopped up and the 3 year old off the kitchen table.

Let that cook for another 10 minutes or so to get most of the veggies translucent and relaxed enough to release some flavor into the mix ;)
Then it's time to add the pasta sauce, salt, pepper and herbs.
Do you say 'erbs or Herbs?
I am a HHHerb person myself.

Now it's time to give it a stir, tuck everyone in and let the good stuff cook! I left this for almost an hour, checking and stirring every once in a great while (read: when I actually remembered). It really depends on how you like your vegetables. With some bite left? Mushy mushy? You decide...
No need to add any water either, most of the veggies already have lots of water which will come out as they cook.

Ta-daa... dinner is served...
This was dinner on night #1. Lunch on day #2 with some tater tots and dinos... yeah, yeah... and dinner again on night #3 with brown rice and a burger patty! Still one more serving to go.
My phone app tells me this is worth about 133 calories a pop! Not bad for a bowl full of SEVEN veggies!
I think I will eat that last serving on some Ak-Mak crackers.

Oh... and bonus points: it is delicious hot and cold!

Happy Eating!

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