Monday, August 18, 2008

Too much zuccini? Try ratatouille

Zuccini season is here, and if you, or anyone you know have grown zuccini this year, you probably have mor than you know what to do with. As part of my search for balance, I have been spending more time in the kitchen. I love to cook, and rarely had the luxury of time during law school. Here is a recipie I've come up with that will get rid of some of your extra zuccini--I've already made it twice and it has been a great success.

Slice two medium/large onions. Heat 2T of EVOO in a dutch oven over medium heat. When the oil is shimmering, add the onions and some salt and sautee until the onions start to brown (about 6 minutes). Slice 2-3 medium potatoes (I used new red potatoes), and 2-3 medium zuccini. Once the onions have started to brown remove from pan and set aside. Add 1T EVOO to pan, allow to heat, and add the potatoes, salt and pepper, allow to cook until they begin to look translucent and soften, about 8 minutes. Remove potatoes from pan. If needed, add 1T EVOO and sautee zuccini adding about 1 tsp crushed red pepper, 1/2 tsp rubbed thyme, and S&P. Sautee until they begin to brown, about 8 minutes, remove from pan. Add 1 c. white wine to pan (and pour some for yourself, you have been slaving over a hot stove!) and deglaze, scraping up the brown bits. Add one large (32 oz ?) can of crushed tomatoes in sauce and 1/2 cup chicken or vegitable stock. Bring to a simmer. Add 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper, 1 tsp each thyme, rosemary and oregano (rubbed). Cook until reduced by half, looking for a thick consistency. Spoon the sauce out of the pan, leaving a small amount on the bottom. Place reserved onions in the bottom of the pan, then layer potatoes and zuccini, smooth over remaining sauce. Squeeze 1/2 lemon over the top and sprinkle on one cup of feta cheese. Cut a sheet of parchment paper to fit just over the ratatouille (this will allow moisture to evaporate out and prevent the top from burning) Bake at 350 for 45 minutes. Garnish with fresh chopped parsley and enjoy. Serves 6-8 as a side dish.

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