Ratatouille, My Way..

My kids and I have agreed to go meatless at least a few days a week, and I wanted to share with all of you my favorite vegetarian recipe. It is a Ratatouille, with my own twists and of course adding my Peruvian Flair. It is refreshing and healing, and an opportunity to visit my local Farmer’s Market.

Complement  this dish with a side of brown rice, roasted sweet potato and you will be all set.

I am adding a Peruvian ingredient, Aji Panca, a sun dried pepper, not as a spicy with a smokey taste and reddish color. It is also called Aji Colorado. The pepper is a variety of Capsicum baccatum, great anti inflammatory, good for fighting infections and decreasing blood pressure. You can find Aji Panca at any Latin American market as well online.

I would love to hear your comments about this recipe:

Yield : 4 people

1 Tbsp Grapeseed oil

1 Red Onion, finely diced

3 Garlic cloves, smashed and diced

Salt and Pepper to Taste

1/2 tsp Cumin

1 tsp Aji Panca paste

1 tsp Tomato Paste

2 celery stalks, finely diced

2 carrots, diced

2 Tomatoes, diced

2 Red Peppers, diced

⅓ cup Green onions, chopped

1 tsp Thyme, fresh or dried

1 Bay leaf

2 Zucchini Squash chopped

2 Yellow Squash chopped

1 Eggplant

2 cups Vegetable Broth

1 can 12 oz chickpeas

Cilantro Sprig for garnish

In a medium pot on medium heat pour the oil, add the onion and cook until transparent, add the garlic, salt, pepper and cumin, let it cook for a minute. Add Aji Panca and tomato paste, mix together. Add celery, carrots, tomatoes, red peppers, green onions, thyme, bay leaf, zucchini, eggplant and yellow squash. Mix well, add vegetable broth, lower the heat and let it simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally to mix the flavors of the vegetables. Add the chickpeas and continue cooking for another 10 minutes. Taste for seasoning and add salt and pepper as necessary.

Remove the Bay Leaf and serve on a plate or shallow bowl with a side of brown rice and if you like, roasted sweet potatoes. Garnish with a sprig of cilantro.

Enjoy!

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