For me the perfect recipe is simple, colourful and delicious. Here is all I need for a perfect evening at home. Really, it is a very easy recipe. All you need to add is some lovely, chunky, fresh bread.
· 4 tbsp olive oil
· 2 medium onions, quartered
· 2 cloves of garlic, crushed
· 1 red pepper, sliced
· 1 yellow pepper, sliced
· 2 large aubergines, halved horizontally then sliced into 3cm pieces
· 3 medium courgettes, sliced into 3cm pieces
· 400 g canned chopped tomatoes
· small bunch of basil, leaves torn
· 2-3 sprigs of thyme
· Red wine or vinegar and sugar – added for a more intense taste but optional
1. Heat oil in a large casserole dish and sweat the onions and garlic for 10 minutes on a low heat with the lid on.
2. Add the peppers, aubergines and courgettes and thyme. Season with salt and pepper, stir and cook for a further 20 minutes with the lid on.
3. Pour in the chopped tomatoes and the wine or vinegar and sugar, if required, stir and check the seasoning.
4. Cook for a further 5 minutes without the lid.
5. Stir in the basil.
6. Serve with chunky slices of fresh bread.
For an even more intense Mediterranean flavour, add 1 tbsp capers, a handful of pitted black olives and a few chopped anchovies. You can even turn left over ratatouille into a savoury pie by just adding a crumble top of flour, butter, thyme leaves and grated cheese
It is better served warm than hot.