Monday, February 21, 2011

Ratatouille gratin

A few weeks ago, Dana Velden wrote a beautiful post about using up all the bits of vegetables she had in her kitchen.  Today, her meditation inspired me to do the same.

A small eggplant, onions, a can of diced tomatoes, and an end piece of Comté is what I had in my fridge and pantry.  The onion, tomatoes, and cheese are staples; I bought the eggplant for Saturday's dinner, but didn't use it.  Today I decided not to do a daily shopping, but instead, use up these bits I had in my kitchen.  Maybe my recipe will inspire you the way Dana's post inspired me.

I heated some olive oil in my braiser, rough chopped the onions, added them to the oil, and let them brown.  I diced the eggplant, added it to the onion, and let it brown slightly.  Next, I added a can of diced tomatoes, seasonings, and let the whole mixture cook until the juices started to thicken.  I placed the mixture into a small gratin dish, topped it with the cheese, and baked it in a 350 oven until the mixture was bubbly and the cheese was crusty.

The addition of the cheese, and the baking, changed it from a traditional ratatouille to a satisfying gratin, perfect comfort food; a glass of wine and bread turned it into a feast.

I love being inspired in the kitchen, and find some of my most satisfying meals are created when "using it all up."


  1. Yes, that is indeed inspiring. It sounds delicious!

  2. Yum! I have yellow squash, onions, a can of tomatoes, feta, and a piece of softer parmesan in my fridge. I think that's lunch tomorrow! Thanks for the simple tip!

  3. My favorite kitchen game is using up leftovers. I'm very mindful of not wasting food, and I enjoy the culinary challenge! It's also a reminder to keep staples on hand at all times. You found a very chic way to incorporate your pantry into a frugal meal!