This is taken from Yotam Ottolenghi’s Ratatouille book Plenty: Vibrant Vegetable Recipes from London’s Ottolenghi
Note: Follow the instructions closely, over-cooking the vegetables “is the point,” according to Ottolenghi.
7 tbsp sunflower oil
4 garlic cloves, sliced
2 small onions, cut into 1 1/4-inch dice
1/2 fresh green chilli, thinly sliced
2 small red peppers, cut into 1 1/4 -inch dice
1/2 small butternut squash, peeled and cut into 1 1/4-inch dice
1 small parsnip, peeled and cut into 1 1/4-inch dice
1 cup French beans, trimmed
1 medium courgette, cut into 1 1/4-inch dice
1/2 large aubergine, peeled and cut into 1 1/4-inch dice
1 small potato, peeled and cut into 1 1/4 inch dice
2 medium tomatoes, chopped
1/2 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp tomato paste
salt and black pepper
1 cup water
chopped coriander to garnish (optional)
Pour two-thirds of the oil into a large heavy casserole dish or a pot and place on a medium-high heat. Add the onions and fry for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Next, stir in the garlic, chilli and red peppers and fry for another 5 minutes. Add the butternut squash and parsnip and continue frying 5 minutes.
Using a slotted spoon, lift the vegetables out of the pot and into a medium bowl, leaving as much of the oil in the pot as possible. Top this up with the remaining oil. Add the French beans, courgette and aubergine to the hot oil and fry for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Return the contents of the bowl to the pot. Add the potato, tomatoes, sugar, tomato paste and plenty of salt and pepper. Stir well, then pour in the water, or just enough to half-cover the vegetables. Cover with a lid and leave to simmer gently for 30 minutes. Taste the vegetables and add more salt and pepper if you like.
Finally, preheat the oven to 400 F. Use a slotted spoon to gently lift the vegetables from the pot into a large, deep roasting pan to make a layer about 1 1/4 inches thick. Pour the liquid over the vegetables and place in the oven to cook for 30 minutes. At this point all the vegetables should be very soft and most of the liquid evaporated. Garnish with coriander, if you like, and serve.
Squeeze and breathe.
Love Hannah x