02 September 2016

Roasted summer vegetables

When you think of roasted vegetables, you usually think of winter vegetables — turnips, potatoes, brussels sprouts, onions, celery root, and so on. Summer vegetables can be roasted too, to make what is called ratatouille, but baked in the oven. It's a gratin of eggplant, zucchini, and tomatoes, with onions, bell peppers, garlic, herbs, and olive oil.

Slice an onion or two and line the bottom of a baking dish with the slices. Also slice up a couple of eggplants (aubergines), and couple of zucchini (courgettes), and several smallish tomatoes (tomates).

Arrange the vegetables like this in the dish, on top of the onions. In this one, the vegetable slices are arranged, standing up, more or less randomly.

It never hurts to have fresh tomatoes from the garden. Ratatouille is definitely a summertime treat. If you end up with extra vegetable slices after filling up a baking dish or two, you can always cook them as a classic ratataouille, in a pot on top of the stove.

In this taller dish, I used bigger slices of vegetables and arranged them row by row: a row of zucchini, a row of eggplant, and a row of tomato. Instead of sliced onion, I put sliced bell peppers in the bottom of the dish. Sprinkle on dried herbs, salt, pepper, a few hot red pepper flakes, and a good amount of olive oil.

Cook the gratin in a slow oven (160ºC, 325ºF) as long as you like to tenderize the vegetables. I left this one for at least an hour, adding a little water to the dish from time to time so the vegetables would steam through and end up confits and moelleux. And slightly singed.


  1. Ne seriez vous pas un peu gourmand ?

  2. Do you salt the eggplant and press it?
    It's still too hot here to turn on the oven--35 expected today. Fine if you aren't baking. I wanted to make a tarte for tonight but am now considering a fruit salad as dessert....

  3. I salted it and let it disgorge for 30 minutes or so, but I didn't rinse or press it. I salted the gratin only lightly once it was in the pan.

    Our mornings are cool until about noon, so we can use the oven. We keep the house open all day anyway, so if it's hot outside it's hot inside. The heat won't last.

  4. Replies
    1. I'm okay, I think. I finished my course of anti-viral meds a couple of days ago. I have some pain still, but much less than last week. The whole episode started two werks ago, and I'll consider myself lucky if it really ends soon. Merci d'avoir demandé, Melinda.

  5. It isn't enough that you live in that fabulous place but you have fabulous veggies and now I see that you are cooking fabulously pretty dishes using your fabulous veggies .

    LOL ... I am going to copy this one. There is a farm stand not far from where I live .. I can pick up some fresh veggies.
    As soon as the Hurricane !!! is over. :)

  6. With fresh, garden tomatoes....wow. This must be sooooo good!

  7. My summertime favorite! I don't remember that you put the onions on the bottom before and no garlic this time. I'm adding this to My Labor Day dinner this year- it will be good with potato salad I think and BBQ.

  8. I have a similar recipe that has you add some feta on top before baking - serve with lots of great bread and a glass of wine.

  9. I used to take leftover ratatouille and warm it up and serve it as sauce on pasta shells.
    And my husband loved it as a sloppy sandwich on a toasted roll with melted cheese on top.
    Maybe I should go have dinner now :)


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