Ratatouille et Rosé
I’ve mentioned my love for everything French before. I may be Norwegian by birth, but somewhere in my long line of Viking ancestors (son 2 is immensely proud of that fact) there must have been a Mediterranean. When I’m lucky enough to spend some time in France, I feel at home. But since that rarely happens, I must resort to other means and cooking and eating French food is thus the next best thing. French wine works too!
When our Wineclub decided on exploring rosé wines I knew exactly what to bring — and what to pair it with. A Provence rosé and ratatouille. Best friends. Match made in heaven.
Here’s my version of ratatouille, based on various recipes I’ve tried over the years. This is the kind of dish that changes slightly every time you make it. A dash of more herbs here, an extra zucchini there.
Luckily herbs grow without too much care, thyme seems to be able to withstand a lot and we’re grateful for that, as it also goes with so many dishes (even dessert).
Eggplants are full of moisture, so salting and letting them sweat a bit makes for a more concentrated flavour.
Takes a few pots and pans, but the result is worth it.
My work is done, now it’s up to time.
A selection of French rosé wine. All delicious, yet different.
- 2 large eggplants, sliced
- olive oil
- lemon thyme
- 2 onions, halved, sliced
- 4 garlic cloves, chopped
- 3 bell peppers, cored, halved, sliced
- 4 large heirloom tomatoes, quartered, sliced
- 4 medium zucchini, sliced
- Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
Layer the eggplant slices with salt in a colander, cover with something heavy and let drain.
Heat the oven to 450F.
Heat the olive oil in a large casserole over medium heat, sprinkle in the chopped thyme. Sauté onions and garlic for about 5 minutes, then add the bell peppers.
Meanwhile, pat the eggplant slices dry with a paper towel and spread out on a baking sheet covered in parchment and drizzled with olive oil. Add some olive oil on top as well as salt and pepper, roast in oven until golden, turning a few times.
Add the tomatoes and bay leaf to the onions and peppers, season with salt, and let simmer.
In a separate pan, heat olive oil and savory, add the sliced zucchini, salt and pepper, and sauté over medium-high heat.
Add the roasted eggplant and the golden zucchini to the casserole, stir and season to taste, then let simmer for about half an hour.
You can serve this as is, piping hot, lukewarm, and even cold. The flavours do develop with time, so if you can wait a day, even better.
So pour yourself a nice glass of chilled rosé and go to France in a meal!