by Amanda Kahn
When coming to BMSC for a long stay, folks like to do a big shopping run, often in Port Alberni or, in my case when coming out to BMSC this year, the Costco in Nanaimo. What resulted was a binge of fresh produce, since every perishable item looked too amazing to pass up (before arriving, we didn’t know how much the general store would stock!).
This dish passes muster for a BMSC meal in several ways:
- It can be eaten along with several different grains such as pasta, quinoa, or rice, thereby diversifying the meal and stretching it last as lunch and/or dinner for up to a week.
- It is a great thing to eat with groups, whether at potlucks or just sharing with cabin-mates.
- Related to that, it’s vegan and, depending on what you make to accompany it, gluten-free, making it easy to share with groups of folks.
- It’s fun to cook with others because everyone can contribute their veggies to the mix.
Recipe by Amanda Kahn
1 eggplant, cubed into 2-cm cubes
2 zucchini, cut into 1-cm thick half-moons
1 onion, quartered
2 tomatoes, sliced into sections
2 bell peppers (red, orange, or yellow), sliced
2 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and pepper, to taste
Dried thyme, to taste (I like about 1/2 tsp)
Ideally, put eggplant and zucchini slices in a colander one hour before planning to start baking. Sprinkle liberally with salt and squash them in the colander with a bowl to squeeze out some of the water (this makes them less bitter). I skip this step a lot though–it still tastes good in the end.
Put all veggies in an oven-safe baking dish. Add oil, salt, pepper, and thyme and stir to coat all veggies thoroughly with oil (you can vary the oil–more or less, really just whatever you need to coat the veggies). Bake at 375 for 45 minutes to 1 hour, until the bell peppers are soft and a bunch of delicious vegetable juices have accumulated in the pan.
Ratatouille is traditionally eaten over pasta (make sure to get some of that veggie juice as sauce for your pasta), but it’s also good with quinoa and brown rice.
Enjoy! And invite a friend!