Oven-roasted Ratatouille

If you like ratatouille, once you've tried it roasted like this you'll never go back to the traditional method. Not only do the vegetables retain their shape and identity, but they also take on a lovely toasted flavour.

Serves 4

This recipe is from Delia Smith's Summer Collection, it also appeared in Sainsbury’s Magazine (Sept 1994).

Oven-roasted Ratatouille
 2 medium courgettes
 1 small aubergine
 1 rounded dessertspoon salt
 1 lb (450g) ripe Italian tomatoes or any other red tomatoes
 1 small red pepper, de-seeded and cut into 1 in (2.5 cm) squares
 1 small yellow pepper, de-seeded and cut into 1 in (2.5 cm) squares
 1 medium onion, peeled and chopped into 1 in (2.5 cm) squares
 2 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
 1 handful fresh basil leaves, or 1 x 15 g pack
 1 heaped teaspoon coriander seeds, crushed
 3 tablespoons olive oil
 freshly milled black pepper
You will also need a 16½ x 12 in (42 x 30.5 cm) shallow roasting tray.


Prepare the courgettes and aubergine ahead of time by cutting them into 1 in (2.5 cm) dice, leaving the skins on.

Now place them in a colander and mix them with one rounded dessertspoon of salt. Then place a plate on top of them and weigh it down with a heavy weight, making sure you have a plate underneath the colander to catch the drips.

Leave them like this for an hour so that any bitter juices can drain out.

Meanwhile, pour boiling water over the tomatoes, leave them for one minute exactly, then drain, slip the skins off and quarter the flesh.

When the aubergines and courgettes have drained, squeeze out any excess juice, then dry them thoroughly in a clean cloth.

Pre-heat the oven to its highest setting.

Now arrange the tomatoes, aubergines, courgettes, peppers and onion on the roasting tray, sprinkle with the garlic, torn-up basil leaves, crushed coriander seeds and pepper.

Drizzle the oil over, then mix thoroughly to get a good coating of oil.

Roast on the highest shelf of the oven for 30-40 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender and tinged brown at the edges. 

Serve straight away.

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