A local CSA box provides the regular two-fold blessing of being a staple food source along with the challenge of how to best use the fresh, local bounty.
My creativity is tested when I have to figure out what to do with 3 heads of cabbage, a few pounds of okra, and a refrigerator drawer full of squash. I’ll admit that our neighbor is sometimes the recipient our veggie overflow when my creativity is lacking. (Translation: armloads of greens dropped off on her doorstep like unwanted kittens.)
I absolutely will not allow things to go to waste in my refrigerator, and I’m always in search of simple recipes that call for massive amounts of veggies. And call me crazy, but soup doesn’t get me excited in the summer. Who’s with me on this one?
The perfect answer to my produce overload? Roasted Ratatouille.
Ratatouille is typically a stew consisting of eggplant, zucchini, green pepper, onion, garlic, and tomatoes. I had all of these things and more…and I wasn’t afraid to improvise. See what you think about this recipe!
Roasted Ratatouille Recipe
- 1 medium sized eggplant (or 2 small), chopped into 1 ½ inch pieces
- 2 medium sized zucchini, chopped into 1 ½ inch pieces
- 1 bell pepper, chopped into 1 ½ inch pieces
- 1 large handfull (about 1 pint) cherry tomatoes or 1-2 medium tomatoes cut into wedges
- ½ large red onion, chopped into 1 ½ inch pieces
- 1 cup okra, chopped into 1 inch pieces
- any other veggies you think will be a nice addition! (I even included some beets and an unidentified root vegetable that needed to be eaten!)
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- ¼ cup red wine
- 2 Tbsp olive oil (where to buy olive oil)
- 2 Tbsp red wine vinegar
- 1 Tbsp tomato paste
- 1 Tbsp fresh (or 1 tsp dried) basil, chopped
- 1 ½ tsp fresh (or ½ tsp dried) thyme
- 1 ½ tsp fresh (or ½ tsp dried) rosemary
- 1 tsp sea salt (where to buy sea salt)
- ½ tsp freshly cracked black pepper
In a large mixing bowl, combine marinade and chopped vegetables together. Toss to coat all vegetables and allow to sit for 30-45 minutes. Spread marinated vegetables onto a large baking sheet or stone. Roast in a 400° oven for 30-45 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes, until vegetables are tender and look roasted.
Sprinkle with fresh basil, a little freshly grated parmesan cheese, and serve as a side dish or over couscous. This recipe serves 4-6 people.
No rules here. This is a fridge-clearing recipe so add or omit whatever you like.
What about you?
What creative ways do you prepare summer produce for your family?
Share your ideas below!