Ratatouille

Ratatouille is a fancy (and hard name to say) French provincial stewed vegetable dish, originating in Nice.

This vegetable stew is tasty and substantial, and carefully  seasoned just before it finishes cooking brings out the flavours.

Ingredients for 8 servings:

  • 2 large onions, sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, sliced or crushed
  • 2 tablespoons cooking oil
  • 2-3 cups sliced zucchini
  • 1-2 green peppers, seeded and diced
  • 2-3 cups diced eggplant
  • 1/4 cup cooking oil
  • 3 cups chopped and peeled tomatoes, substitute canned for fresh in the winter
  • fresh or dried basil or oregano
  • salt, pepper and sugar
  • chopped parsley

Take a large frying pan and fry the onions and garlic in oil until just coloured very slightly.

Add the zucchini and peppers. Cook over a moderate heat, turning the vegetables,  from time to time, for about 5-10 minutes.

Remove vegetables from the pan and brown the eggplant in the second measure of oil. Add the partly cooked vegetables, along with the tomatoes.

Cover pan with a lid, after adding basil or oregano. Cook over a low heat for about 30 minutes, then season with salt, pepper and sugar to taste.

**I add a dash of black sauce for a little bit of heat

**If serving hot, thicken with a little cornflour paste

**Quantities of vegetables may vary, and zucchini, peppers or eggplant can be left out (not all of them though :))

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Now I love Ratatouille as a side dish with grilled or poached chicken…last nights supper below.

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And it makes a super delicious breakfast with a poached egg – that’s my breakfast sorted for tomorrow!

Super tasty with a grilled sausage, poached fish, or room temperature as a salad. Give it a try especially now when eggplants are so inexpensive – $.99 cents at my local green grocer this weekend.

If you enjoyed this eggplant dish try Eggplant Parmesan – another favourite!

Happy healthy cooking xx

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Spicy Chicken Enchiladas

Last Saturday I had a craving for something spicy for dinner – and after looking in the freezer I landed on chicken thighs. What to do with them was the next question?

I am a big fan of Mexican cuisine and armed with tortillas, red & yellow peppers, and a couple of fresh red chillies, decided to make some chicken enchiladas.

For this recipe you make the tomato sauce from scratch, char the peppers and then put it all together and bake for 25 minutes.

Save this for a weekend dinner when you have time to ‘potter’ about in the kitchen – it does take a bit a time, but trust me, it is worth it!

Ingredients

  • 4 boneless chicken thighs, chopped
  • 4 sprigs of fresh thyme
  • olive oil

    Spicy

    Spicy Chicken Enchilada’s – fun to make and delicious for dinner with a couple of friends.

  • 1 lemon
  • 2 red onions
  • 1 red pepper
  • 1  yellow pepper
  • 2 fish red chillies
  • 3 ripe tomato
  • 1/3 bunch fresh coriander
  • 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 1 ripe avocado
  • 4 medium flour tortillas
  • 40 g hard cheese, grated
  • sour cream
  • black pepper
  • salt

Place the chicken into a bowl with thyme leaves, juice from 1/2 lemon and a tbsp olive oil. Season well with salt & pepper, stir to combine, and then set aside.

Preheat the oven to 180°c.

Preheat a large griddle pan – peel and slice the red onions in
to wedges, then soften on the griddle pan for 5 minutes, or until softened and charred. (Keep turning so you don’t burn them). Pop into a bowl until you need them.

Next, char the peppers on the griddle pan. I used the pan and my gas cooker to do this…it was quicker and quite a bit of fun actually 🙂 Set aside to cool.

Add the peppers to char and then halving the tomatoes add them the pan too. Cook for about 5 minutes, or until softened. Again don’t forget to turn the tomatoes occasionally.

Cut the stalks from the coriander and place in the food processor ( or blender). Add the tomatoes, and the red wine vinegar.

Scrape the skin off the cooled peppers and chillies, then de seed. Roughly chop along with onions, then add half of these vegetables & chillies to the food processor (or blender).

Blitz until smooth, season with salt & pepper, and more vinegar if you think it needs it – set aside.

Wipe the griddle pan, and heat to a medium-high heat. Add the marinated chicken and grill for 10 minutes, or until cooked through.

Chop the chicken, and put into a bowl with 2 tbsp of the sauce. Mix well.

Add the reserved peppers, chillies and onions to the bowl and mix everything together

Halve the avocado, scooping the flesh into a bowl; mix with a squeeze of lemon juice, season with salt & pepper and mash with a fork.

Time to assemble!

  1. Spoon half of the tomato sauce into a baking dish.
  2. Spoon equal amounts  of the chicken mixture on one side of each tortilla. Add a spoonful of avocado, then roll up (the messy step!)
  3. Place the filled tortillas into the baking dish in a single layer, join side down.
  4. Pour over the rest of the tomato sauce, then grated cheese, and finally a drizzle of olive oil.
  5. Bake for 20-25 minutes in a hot oven.
  6. Sprinkle over coriander leaves, and serve with a dollop of sour cream.
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Spicy Chicken Enchiladas – great for a weekend dinner with family & friends.

Happy cooking xx

Spicy Chicken Enchiladas