Isn’t it beautiful? The color of summer’s harvest, so fresh and vibrant. I’m a sucker for all things local, and colorful, so when I saw these beautiful little summer patty pan squashes at my favorite farm market I had to add them to my already heavily loaded cart.
Later that day, I had to make a quick dinner, and I knew my summer squashes were going to participate but what else? Alongside the squash I placed a plethora of locally grown goodies; a perfect Okanagan eggplant, some sweet tooth red peppers, a red onion, a bunch of basil and garlic. And then I waited to be inspired, and dream up a delectable, and easy meal that would do justice to all these lovely ingredients.
I decided to make a simple ratatouille to serve over pasta, it seemed the best, non-fussy way to cook the ingredients fast.
Once I was done chopping it seemed like a lot of vegetables, but I knew the squash, and eggplant would reduce substantially once cooked. The final result was beautiful; creamy from the cooked down eggplant, and squashes, tangy from the onion, garlic, and tomato paste, and a fresh endnote from the lovely basil. The ratatouille, which I served over pasta generously coated with a high quality olive oil, was a winner all around and enjoyed by the whole family. Loved seeing my little Lhasa chow down on all those good vegetables.
The hardest part about making this dish is the cutting of all the vegetables so if you are looking for a fast, fresh, and healthy meal, this is the one for you!
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 6 patty pan summer squashes
- 1 eggplant, peeled
- 5 sweet tooth red peppers
- 2 medium onions or 1 large onion
- 6 cloves of garlic
- 1 bunch of fresh basil
- 4 tbsp tomato paste
- ¼ - ½ cup water
- salt to taste
- Chop the patty pan, eggplant, and peppers into bite sized pieces.
- Finely dice the onions, and garlic.
- Trim the basil leaves off the stems and chop finely.
- Heat the olive oil in a large pan on medium heat. When the oil is hot add the onions and garlic. Cook until soft.
- Add in the rest of the vegetables, and the tomato paste. Salt to taste.
- When the veggies start to cook and dry out a bit add water. Scrape the bottom of the pan to make sure the caramelized parts become incorporated.
- Cook until all the vegetables are cooked through. Keep adding water during this time whenever necessary to ensure your vegetable don’t burn or dry out.
- Add chopped basil, and cook for a few minutes.
- Serve over pasta, rice or with a crusty bread.
- A splash of red, or white wine cooked into the tomato sauce would be a delicious addition to dish.