Yes, Ratatouille is Gluten-Free!

ratatouille gluten free

Ratatouille (not cooked by the famous chef rat, as the animated movie would have you believe) is a classic autumnal vegetable dish hailing from Provence.  Some say it is a dish for leftover pieces of vegetables. Some say it’s a celebration of the bountiful harvest of early 20th century Nice in Provence, in the south of France.  Whichever way it came about, if you’re worrying about foods that contain gluten, you’ll definitely enjoy this classic French delicacy. It’s one of those real comfort foods which makes you want to curl up on a nice plush couch bowl in hand,  taking 2 spoonfuls at a time.

It’s not a very usual thing to cook in a Filipino kitchen,  but really. What could be more Pinoy than a very delicious vegetable stew (Pakbet, anyone?)

I think the only reason we don’t embrace this dish as much as we would is because it uses Zucchini (or sukini in Tagalog),  which can come a bit pricey to as much as P250.00 per kilo.  But if you are ready to shell out a few extra pesos, you can have this exciting nutritious meal that can just make you parler francais.  We can even get a bit Pinoy-dangerous, and try it with rice and a side of meat. (Do we dare? Of course.) Let’s get cooking!

Ingredients

1 large eggplant, peeled and sliced into 1-inch pieces

1½ tsp salt

½ cup olive oil

1 large zucchini, sliced into ¼-inch-thick rounds

2 big tomatoes, sliced into ¼-inch think rounds

4 thyme sprigs

1 bay leaf

2 medium yellow onions, cut into ½-inch dice

1 red bell pepper—stemmed, seeded and coarsely chopped

2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced

Red pepper flakes

1 cup basil leaves, torn

1 tbsp flat-leaf parsley, choped

Directions

Prepare the eggplant by mixing with 1 teaspoon salt.  Let sit for 30 minutes and drain. This process sweats out the eggplant and removes extra moisture.  Pat the eggplant pieces dry and set aside. Heat olive oil in a heavy pot, and cook the eggplant until golden, stirring occasionally. Set aside.  In the same pot, add more oil as needed. Cook the zucchini in this same pot until golden, and then set aside with the eggplant.

Prepare half the tomatoes by crushing by hand, and seasoning with ½ teaspoon of salt. Set aside.

Tie thyme, bay leaf sprigs together. In the same pot, cook onions and herb bundle until soft and translucent. Add the bell pepper and cook stirring occasionally, until very soft.

Add garlic, pepper flakes until fragrant. Add the crushed tomatoes, then reduce the heat to medium low and cook until the tomatoes are very soft flavors have married. Add the reserved eggplant and zucchini and the remaining tomatoes. Lightly mix to combine.

Season with salt, cover and reduce the heat to low. Cook until all the vegetables have softened. Remove pot from heat, and take out the herb bundle. Top dish with the basil and parsley. Serve!

Making this makes for a surprisingly easy cleanup, no peeling, and you cook everything in just one pot! Have a go a this recipe and let us know how you find it. 🙂 Bon appetit!

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RECIPE: Gluten-Free Spaghetti with Scallops and Mussels

gluten-free-spaghetti-scallops
There’s no need to go to an Italian restaurant to enjoy this classic pasta dish, and you can even have it gluten-free. You can prepare it in minutes with the convenience of the frozen seafood available on Gerald.ph.

Ingredients
1 pack Gerald.ph gluten-free spaghetti
1/2 cup reserved pasta water
1 pack scallops (roe off)
1/2 pack mussels (shell off)
3/4 cup dry white wine
1/4 cup frozen chopped parsley
2-3 tbs garlic herb butter
4 cloves garlic, chopped
2-3 tbs. flour
2 tbs. olive oil
Salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
Directions
1.In a large pot, cook pasta until al dente or tender to the bite. Drain and set aside some pasta water.
2. Lightly dredge each scallop in a bowl full of flour and season with a bit of salt and pepper. Shake off the excess. In a skillet over medium-high heat, add olive oil and half of the garlic herb butter. Saute scallops for about 2-3 minutes on one side until just beginning to brown, then carefully turn over and continue cooking for another 2-3 minutes.
3. Add chopped garlic into the skillet and saute for 30-40 seconds – do not let it brown. Add the wine and a little bit of the pasta water, about 1/4 cup. Then add mussels and cover for 3-4 minutes. Stir.
4. Add cooked pasta and season with additional salt and remaining herb butter. Add more pasta water or a touch of wine if you prefer more broth. Sprinkle with parsley and toss gently to combine.
Voila, a delightful pasta dish!