Summer Tomato Stovetop Ratatouille
By Market Chef Maggie Perkins
¼ cup grapeseed oil, divided
1 large clove elephant garlic, peeled and thinly sliced (Bernhardt’s Farm)
1 leek, sliced, separated into ringlets, rinsed thoroughly and dried by squeezing in a paper towel (Johnson’s Backyard Garden)
1 medium eggplant, peeled and diced (B5 Farm or Johnson’s Backyard Garden)
4 sweet peppers, sliced thinly (we used banana peppers, bell peppers, and Italian peppers – Johnson’s Backyard Garden)
Assorted in-season tomatoes, chopped, to yield 4-5 cups (Johnson’s Backyard Garden or Bernhardt’s Farm)
1 small bunch fresh basil, minced (Bouldin Food Forest)
Salt and pepper to taste
In a large, heavy saucepan, heat a small layer of oil over medium heat to shimmering. Add garlic to the heated oil and sauté, stirring constantly, about one minute. Add sliced leeks to garlic in oil. Sauté, continually stirring, for about a minute, or until limp.
Add diced eggplant to mixture. Stirring frequently, cook until eggplant is tender. (Eggplant will soak up oil. Add oil as needed to prevent ingredients from sticking to the pan.) Add sweet peppers and tomatoes to tender eggplant. Continue cooking over medium heat as tomatoes release juices and peppers reach tender-crisp stage, about 15 minutes.
Add minced fresh basil to pan, tossing to incorporate. Season well with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. Reduce heat to medium low and cook for additional 5 minutes, or until all vegetables are soft and seasonings are well-incorporated.
Serves 6. Photo courtesy of Maggie Perkins