Culinary Smackdown – Battle Eggplant – Part 2

The inspiration for my second eggplant dish must be given to Gwyneth Paltrow. She’s on the cover of the recent Bon Apetite magazine and one of the recipes involved some long, slow roasted cherry tomatoes.  I did that with a bunch and tossed them into a pasta salad and they were FABULOUS, so I thought what if…hmmmm.  And there was born part 2:

Grumpy Granny’s Roasted Ratatouille: 

As always, ingredients, ingredients, ingredients:

Preheat the oven to 200.  Yes, this dish takes a while, but oh, so worth it.  Plus 200 degrees won’t overheat your kitchen these days.  Next put the cherry tomatoes (2 cups), 1 large onion, (quartered, thinly sliced), 8 or 9 whole, peeled garlic cloves and the sliced peppers in a large casserole dish.  Splash on some olive oil, kosher salt and some fresh ground black pepper:

Just look at them in there, all shiny and ready for roasting! Pop them in the oven for about an hour. While that’s going on, peel and cube the eggplant, put in a colander, sprinkle with a little salt, cover and let drain:

Next, pull out the casserole, stir in the eggplant and add about a teaspoon each of dried basil and dried oregano:

You can see how the onion is becoming transparent and the tomatoes are losing their skins.  Add a wee bit more oil, stir to coat the eggplant and pop back in the oven for another hour.  Eggplants are notorious for soaking up oil like sponges.  This dish is great because it slowly releases the other vegetable juices and the eggplant grabs that instead of more grease. Pop it back in the oven and cube the squash and zucchini.  After another hour, pull out the dish and add those:

I just love the summer colors of this dish:

At this point, I added about 1/4 cup of red wine and back in the oven it went.  Another hour later, time to add the final ingredients: Thinly sliced baby bello mushrooms and some shredded Parmesan:

For the final tour in the oven. At this point, I did turn up the heat to about 300 for the final hour.  The house was smelling pretty darn delicious by then.  At last:


Just look at all the eggplant-y, veggie, cheesy goodness!  I had some chicken sausages with spinach and Asiago cheese and dinner was served:

Now, may the best eggplant win!



3 thoughts on “Culinary Smackdown – Battle Eggplant – Part 2

  1. Just gorgeous, GG! Roasted veggies are a wonderful thing, and I love your tip about doing eggplant this way so it soaks up veggies juices, not just oil. Thanks so much for playing – and for helping to kick-start the revival of the Smackdown!

  2. Wow, that looks delicious! We are all quite picky about eggplant here, I usually have to chop it up really small and “hide” it in spaghetti sauce, but this sounds like something we’d all enjoy. Thanks for sharing!

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