Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Spring Break Ratatouille

It was almost 60 degrees here today.  If the undergraduates had been on campus, they would have been sunning themselves in bikinis on the quad right outside my office window, playing guitar lazily, throwing a frisbee around, and wearing flip-flops.

They weren't on campus, though, and as much as I like the undergraduate energy, it was blissfully quiet.  I went for a long run at lunch, thought about gardens and farmer's markets, and sucked in as much of the warm air as I thought my lungs could hold.

Spring is in the air (even our tomato plants, who sprouted today, agree), and though this dish will probably taste even better when we're right in the thick of CSA season, trying to figure out what to do with our boxed share of the week, it was a nice teaser for what's to come.  It's really just roasted vegetables, but it tastes like summer in a pan.  And it's easy: I can throw it in the oven at night, forget about it for a while, and have it ready for the next day's dinner.  It's also remarkably filling for a vegetarian dish.

Rapid Rataouille (lifted right from In Praise of Leftovers)

4 medium zucchini
1 large yellow onion
1 yellow bell pepper
1 red bell pepper
6 roma tomatoes
1 lb baby red potatoes
5-6 cloves of garlic
1/4 c. good quality olive oil
kosher salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 425. Cut veggies into uniform large-ish pieces and put onto a baking sheet. Add potatoes, halved. Scatter garlic cloves over vegetables. Pour oil over the whole thing and add very generous pinches of salt and pepper.  Toss gently. Roast for about 45 minutes, stirring once, until veggies have crisped up around the edges and everything is all olive-oily-oozy. You can serve this with some fresh rosemary or parsley, fresh parmesan, and lemon zest sprinkled over it, or you can just gobble it down like I did.
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