Amy Jean’s Kitchen: Ratatouille (Binging with Babish)

.

This is the dish that saved a restaurant and you know what it is?

Vegetables. A plate of plain ole vegetables saved a restaurant and

brought a food critic back to his childhood. Guess mom was

right….it is important to eat your veggies. Truth be told I always

thought ratatouille was a meat dish so imagine my surprise when I

found out it actually consisted of zucchini, squash, eggplant, and tomatoes.

All of which are vegetables I do not like. *sigh* Picky eater syndrome is a

real battle some days. Lol However, this cooking challenge is not just about

me trying to learn how to cook, but also to try and push myself out of my

comfort zone and try new things so I made the dish. And I ate it. A whole

plate. And you know what? It actually wasn’t half bad. Lol Honestly, the best

part of the whole dish was the roasted red pepper and tomato sauce.

Without that sauce I don’t think I would have been able to make it past

the first bite because it really did a great job of covering up the taste

(or lack thereof) of the other veggies. Personally I don’t think this

is a meal I would prepare to try and save my restaurant and it definitely

didn’t bring me back to my childhood days, but it was a surprisingly good dish.*

.

*Now I did have someone who actually does like all of these veggies

try it so you guys can have a more informed review of the dish. He said

that he enjoyed it, but felt it was more of a side dish rather than a main

dish. It was lacking meat and would probably be good paired with sausage. 

.

Pre-oven photo op! Not the prettiest and vegetables should have been stacked tighter together, but we made it work. Lol  Also don’t come for me on my slicing skills. I don’t own a mandolin so everything had to be sliced by hand.

.

.

In the video I linked below, Babish uses a ring mold to sculpt his ratatouille tower. I didn’t have a ring mold so instead I used….an ornament shaped Christmas cookie cutter. Sometimes you just gotta work with what you got! Lol 

Confit Byaldi Recipe (Note: This recipe serves 4-6 people and since

I was only feeding myself I halved it.)

.

Ingredients:

6 large plum tomatoes 

2 red bell peppers, stemmed and seeded

Leaves from 2 sprigs fresh rosemary, half left whole, half finely chopped

1 garlic clove

½ small onion

½ cup vegetable stock (I didn’t have any and just used a little chicken broth instead)

3 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

2 medium Japanese eggplants, sliced crosswise ⅛ inch thick on a mandoline

2 medium yellow squash, sliced crosswise ⅛ inch thick on a mandoline

2 medium zucchini, sliced crosswise ⅛ inch thick on a mandoline

1 tsp Kosher salt

1 tsp freshly ground black pepper 

5 fresh parsley leaves, torn

4-6 small fresh chives, for garnish

Steps:

1.) Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Fill a large bowl with ice and

water. Score a small X into the bottom of 4 of the plum tomatoes

and carefully lower them into the boiling water. Blanch for less

than 1 minute, until the X just begins to split up the sides of the

tomatoes. Using a slotted spoon, immediately transfer the tomatoes

to the ice bath to stop cooking. Drain, peel, and set aside.

.

2.) Char the bell peppers directly on the burner of a gas stovetop set

to high, turning them frequently with the tongs, until blackened

all over.* Remove from the heat and cover with aluminum foil. Let the

peppers steam and soften for about 5 minutes. Peel off and discard

the skins and transfer the peppers to a high-powered blender or food

processor. Add the 2 remaining tomatoes, the whole rosemary

leaves, thyme leaves, garlic, onion, stock, ½ cup water, and 1 Tbsp of

the olive oil. Blend on high speed until the roast pepper

puree is completely smooth. 

.

*If you are like me and do not have a gas stovetop you can roast

your peppers in the oven. I set my oven at a temperature of 450 degrees

F and left the peppers in there for about 20 minutes or until their skin started to blacken.

.

3.) Preheat the oven to 225 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

.

4.) Using a very sharp knife, slice the blanched tomatoes ⅛ inch thick

and transfer to the lined baking sheet. In a shallow roaster or 9 x 13 inch

baking dish, pour a thin layer of the roast pepper puree and spread it evenly.

Shingle the sliced vegetables on top of the puree, slightly overlapping 1

slice each of eggplant, tomato, yellow squash, and zucchini. Continue the

pattern around the edge of the baking dish toward the center, packing

the vegetables tightly until the dish is completely filled. Sprinkle the chopped

rosemary leaves, 1 Tbsp of the olive oil, the salt, and the black pepper over

the top. Cut a piece of parchment paper to the size of the baking dish and

place indirectly on top of the vegetables. Bake for 1 hour 10 minutes, remove

the parchment paper, then bake for 20 minutes more, or until the vegetables

are completely softened but still hold their shape. Remove the

confit byaldi from the oven.

.

5.) For each serving, place a 3-inch ring mold (or cookie cutter in my case)

in the center of a large plate. Fill the ring mold with 1 layer of vegetables

stacked vertically. Top that layer with another layer of vegetables fanned

out horizontally. Carefully remove the ring mold to reveal a confit byaldi

tower. Whisk together 1 Tbsp of the roasted pepper puree from the bottom

of the baking dish with the remaining olive oil and drizzle it in a circle around

the tower on each plate. Garnish with some torn parsley and a single chive, and serve

.

Recipe Video

.

.

.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: