Wednesday, August 27, 2008

A Peasant's Dish

The beauty of stews is that recipes are... variable. I suppose what I made last night would be a ratatouille, especially since it's a Provençal dish that undoubtedly changes from door to door. I've had a ton of squash sitting in my fridge for a while now, and some extra tomatoes, so this seemed the logical choice.

Olive oil
A whack of garlic (let's say 6ish cloves), minced
A yellow onion, diced
Tomato paste (I probably used around 3 tbsp or so, since the stuff never gets used)
Around a cup of chicken stock
Most of the squash I had kicking around (1 green zucchini, 4 patty pan squash of various sizes, and some other summer squash), cut into medium-sized cubes (~1/4")
2 Bell peppers (I used 1 yellow + 1/2 red + 1/2 light green)
2 Tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and diced (or use a can, drained)
Hot sauce
1/8 tsp Habanero salt
1/4 tsp sweet smoked paprika
Ground coriander seed
Black pepper
Fresh basil, chopped

Heat the oil over medium heat, add garlic and stir for ~ 1 minute (until you can smell the garlic), sweat the onions (cook until they start to go clear), add the paste and stir it up.

Add the chicken stock and heat until bubbling. Dump in all the squash and peppers and cook for 10 min or so, then simmer, stirring occasionally, until the zucchini starts to get tender (but isn't soft yet).

Add the tomatoes, and stir, heating throughout. Add the spices and salts, stir. Add the basil, let cool a bit, and serve.

I used this recipe (great site btw) as a guide, but obviously our ingredients and amounts differ a bit.

Some people add an egg, which switches it to a Pipérade, from the Basque region. But as I said, it's basically a stew, which means your options are endless. Oh, and it's delicious.

Yah, there are some pictures, I'll throw a couple up when I get home.

Now I need to figure out how to use up my broccoli and green beans. I'm thinking more crustless quiche for the broccoli, with the beans steamed on the side... or perhaps used in niçoise salad, which would also make my potatoes useful.

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