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- 2 medium eggplants (about 1 pound), halved lengthwise
- 1 pound mixed summer squash, halved lengthwise
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 1 tablespoons roughly chopped fresh tarragon
Build a medium fire in a charcoal grill, or heat a gas grill to medium-high. Lightly sprinkle salt over cut sides of eggplant and let sit for 15 minutes (you will see beads of water form on the surface). Rinse eggplant and pat dry.
Lay eggplant, tomatoes, squash, bell pepper, and scallions on a baking sheet and drizzle with 1 Tbsp. oil; season with salt and pepper.
Grill vegetables, turning occasionally, until tender, transferring them to a baking sheet as they are done. The tomatoes, scallions, and eggplant will cook the fastest (2–5 minutes); the squash and bell pepper will take about 5 minutes.
Slice three-quarters of the tomatoes in half and grate the cut side over the coarse holes of a box grater into a medium bowl (discard core and any tomato skin left in your hand). Whisk in vinegar and remaining 2 Tbsp. oil; season to taste with salt and pepper. Set vinaigrette aside.
Chop remaining tomatoes and transfer to a large bowl. Chop remaining grilled vegetables into 1/2-inch pieces and add to bowl. Drizzle tomato vinaigrette over and toss gently to coat. Transfer vegetables to a serving platter or bowl and garnish with tarragon.
Nutritional Content9 servings, 1 serving contains: Calories (kcal) 90 Fat (g) 5 Saturated Fat (g) 1 Cholesterol (mg) 0 Carbohydrates (g) 10 Dietary Fiber (g) 4 Total Sugars (g) 5 Protein (g) 3 Sodium (mg) 65Reviews Section
Grilled Ratatouille Recipe
In my meat-centric world, vegetables create some semblance of balance but are rarely lusted after like a chunk of slow smoked pork or a well seared steak. But there's something about grilled veggies that I find irresistible. The char from the grill, the caramelization of sugars, and the softened texture of things like squash, onions, eggplant, and peppers.
So, I wonder why it took me so long to put these all together into a grilled interpretation of ratatouille.
Grilling each vegetable (and fruit, if you want to get technical), dicing them, and then finishing them with a dressing of herbed white balsamic created a medley of flavors and textures. Creamy eggplant, sweet and sharp onions, and acidic tomatoes all mixed with tangy vinegar and fresh herbs to create an excellent early taste of spring.
Grilled Ratatouille Salad
A few weeks ago we had a houseful of out-of-town family spending the night before we all headed to Litchfield, Connecticut for my niece’s (Maggy and Sharon’s cousin’s) wedding. I was juggling getting the house ready for guests, hosting the bridesmaids for cocktails before their night out on the town, and taking breakfast to the wedding party.
And then there was this family dinner to host. I wanted it to be special—it was a rare night for us all—but I needed it simple and do-ahead too. The main course would be summery lasagna—more on that later. I’d serve salad too. Not an ordinary one. But what?
End of summer I naturally think ratatouille, and that’s when it came to me. I’d grill ratatouille vegetables—eggplant, zucchini, onions, peppers and tomatoes—and then arrange them on a plate with droplets of vinaigrette, and a little feta for flavor.
The big day arrived. Table set and lasagnas assembled, I grilled the vegetables early afternoon. The girls in the kitchen, Sharon making Watermelon Gin Punch for the bachelorette party and Maggy assembling her famous fresh spring rolls, I walked into the kitchen with my freshly grilled vegetables. “Is there any reason I can’t assemble these salads at each place setting right now?” Both shook their heads, “No reason at all.” So Maggy and Sharon dropped what they were doing, and we all headed to the dining room. Sharon and I assembled the salads, and Maggy captured the shot. We loosely covered each salad with a little plastic wrap, and that was that. And when it was time for dinner that night, I simply pulled the plastic wrap and called everyone to the table.
- 1 large garlic clove, minced
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
- Salt and ground black pepper
- ¾ cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided
- 4 ounces (about ¾ cup) crumbled feta cheese, divided
- 1 large eggplant, trimmed and sliced about ½-inch thick
- 2 medium zucchini, trimmed and sliced on the diagonal about ½-inch
- 2 medium red onions, trimmed and cut into thick slabs
- 2 yellow or orange bell peppers, quartered, stemmed and seeded
- 4 Italian plum tomatoes, halved
- ¼ cup chopped fresh oregano
- Whisk garlic, lemon juice, mustard, vinegar, and a light sprinkling of salt and pepper in a 2-cup Pyrex measuring cup. Whisk in ½ cup of oil, slowly at first to ensure mixture emulsifies, to make thick vinaigrette whisk in ½ cup of the feta.
- Meanwhile, heat a gas grill igniting all burners on high for at least 10 minutes. Clean hot grate with a wire brush, then lubricate it with an oil-soaked rag or build a hot charcoal fire. Brush both sides of eggplant, zucchini, onions, peppers, and tomatoes with remaining ¼ cup of oil and season with salt and pepper to taste. Place vegetables on hot rack and grill, turning only once (except tomatoes) until cooked with impressive grill marks, about 5 minutes per side. Leave tomatoes cut side up the entire time and cook until soft and slightly deflated, 8 to 10 minutes. Remove vegetables from grill. (Can be served right away or left at room temperature for a couple of hours.)
- When ready to serve, arrange a portion of vegetables on each salad plate, drizzle with vinaigrette, sprinkle with oregano, and a little extra feta.
About Pam Anderson
Pam Anderson considers herself Every Cook. A New York Times bestselling author, she has been cooking nearly everyday for over 30 years. With seven published books, she brings satisfying recipes and sage advice to both novice and veteran cooks. Whether you’re on a quest for the perfect brownie, wanting to get dinner on the table effortlessly, hoping to entertain more simply, attempting to shed pounds permanently, or looking to eat delicious meatless, Pam can help. AARP’s official food expert, she is a chef contributor at Runner’s World magazine. Pam is former Executive Editor of Cook’s Illustrated magazine. Her food articles have appeared in many food magazines. She teaches cooking classes across the country and appears frequently on TV and radio. She currently is blogging at her new site, Copper House Events.
I love hearty salads like this – especially as it’s do-ahead. Forget the lettuce, just give me the good stuff! I love the chunky roasted vegetables, but the tangy vinaigrette makes this dish!
This looks incredibly delicious!
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Grilled Ratatouille Salad Recipe
Eggplants are the main attraction in this healthy, easy to make Grilled Ratatouille Salad recipe. Eggplants are high in antioxidants, may lower overall cholesterol and help improve blood flow. Add colorful red bell pepper, yellow summer squash and ripe tomatoes to this version of ratatouille for the perfect “flavor of summer” any time of year.
Makes 4 servings
2 Japanese eggplants
1 medium sweet onion, such as Vidalia
1 medium summer squash
1 medium red bell pepper
2 medium ripe tomatoes, chopped
2 tablespoons chopped, pitted black olives
1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
1 tablespoon chopped Italian parsley
½ teaspoon crushed dried oregano
¼ teaspoon crushed dried thyme
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
Salt and pepper to taste
¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 cups cooked brown rice, optional
Slice the eggplants ½ inch thick. Slice the onion ½ inch thick. Quarter the squash lengthwise. Cut the bell pepper into ½ inch pieces lengthwise. Brush the eggplant, onion, bell pepper and squash lightly with oil.
Place in a vegetable basket and grill on a hot grill. Remove the onion, bell pepper and squash after 10 minutes or when browned and tender remove the eggplant after 12 minutes or when browned and tender.
Coarsely chop the grilled vegetables. Place in a bowl. Add the tomatoes, olives, basil, Italian parsley, oregano, thyme, 1 tablespoon olive oil, vinegar, salt and pepper to taste. Toss with cheese. Spoon rice onto 4 plates, if desired. Top with ratatouille.
Fat 10 g
Cholesterol 4 mg
Sodium 450 mg
Carbohydrates 33 g
Fiber 4.5 g
Protein 6.7 g
*Per serving information includes rice seasoned with ¼ tsp salt.
- 1 eggplant, cut into 1/2 inch circles
- 1 teaspoon (5 mL) salt
- 3 tablespoons (45 mL) olive oil
- 1 zucchini, cut in half lengthwise
- 1 summer squash, cut in half lengthwise
- 1 medium onion, quartered
- 1 can stewed tomatoes
- 1/4 cup (60 mL) fresh parsley
- 1/4 cup (60 mL) fresh basil
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon (5 mL) oregano
- 1 teaspoon (5 mL) black pepper
- 1 teaspoon (5 mL) basil
Wash eggplant pieces and sprinkle with salt. Let sit for 30 minutes.
Put 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large resealable plastic bag.
Add eggplant, zucchini, and squash. Toss to coat all the pieces. Remove vegetables and add the onion. Toss to coat.
Place eggplant, zucchini, squash, and onion to grill. The onion might be handled more easily if it is on a skewer.
Grill onions about 10-12 minutes, turning about 3 times.
Grill the remaining vegetables for 4-5 minutes on each side. Remove from grill and let cool.
Cut eggplant into cubes and the other vegetables into thin slices.
In a large saucepan heat the garlic in 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Add remaining ingredients except for the fresh basil and heat on low for 30 minutes. Add fresh basil and mix well.
Grilled Ratatouille Salad
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Reducing balsamic vinegar to a thick syrup gives this dish rich, complex flavor without added fat or calories. For a more filling meal, toss these grilled veggies with whole-wheat pasta.
- 3/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 1 medium eggplant, sliced lengthwise into 1/2-inch pieces
- 3 large red bell peppers, cut into quarters
- 3 medium zucchini, sliced in half lengthwise
- 1 medium onion, sliced into 1/2-inch rings
- 1/4 cup parsley, chopped
- 1/4 cup basil, chopped
- 1/4 cup pine nuts
1. Put vinegar in small saucepan and bring to a simmer over high heat. Reduce heat to medium, and cook 12 minutes or until vinegar becomes syrup-like and reduces to ¼ cup. Set aside.
2. Place eggplant, peppers, zucchini, and onion in large bowl, and season with salt and pepper. Let stand 30 minutes at room temperature or refrigerate overnight. Pour off any liquid.
3. Heat grill or grill pan over medium-high heat. Spritz vegetables with cooking spray, and grill 2 to 3 minutes on each side, or until cooked through. Cool slightly, and chop into 1-inch pieces. Toss with parsley, basil, pine nuts, and balsamic syrup. Serve warm or chilled.
What is Ratatouille?
Ratatouille is a traditional French vegetable casserole basically comprised of seasonal vegetables, tomato sauce, and garlic. There are as many variations of this recipe as there are types of summer vegetables. The most common combination is zucchini, yellow squash, tomatoes, and eggplant. My family won’t touch eggplant with a 10 foot pole, so I substituted with peeled sweet potatoes.
There are rustic versions of ratatouille with the vegetables roughly chopped and all mixed together. I went a little higher in the effort department on this dish because I just think that the sliced vegetables all layered together made the most beautiful presentation. It looks like work, but from start to finish the whole thing took about 20 minutes because I shaved off some time by using store bought marinara sauce. If you wanted to go all out, you could make and use my homemade smoke roasted garden tomato sauce or meet in the middle with McCormick’s Thick and Zesty Spaghetti Sauce Mix. Either would be absolutely out of this world delicious!!
One of the most important components of a good ratatouille is using garlic to season. I used the Roasted Garlic and Herb seasoning blend from McCormick to sprinkle liberally all over the top of my beautifully arranged vegetables. This blend uses large chunks of dehydrated garlic and herbs with the perfect mix of zesty seasonings, so as the grilled ratatouille simmered and roasted in the grill, the spices soaked up the braising liquid and perfectly seasoned the vegetables.
We reinvented your favorite veggie dish in salad form and topped it all off with fresh mozzarella.
- Heat grill to medium-high.
- In a large bowl, toss the vegetables with 1 1/2 tablespoons oil and 1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Grill until lightly charred and tender, 3 to 4 minutes per side for the pepper, eggplant, zucchini, and squash, and 1 to 2 minutes on the cut side only for the tomatoes. Transfer the eggplant and tomatoes back to the bowl and the rest of the vegetables to a cutting board.
- Slice the peppers, zucchini, and squash and add to the bowl. Gently toss with the vinegar, basil, and arugula.
- Brush the bread slices with remaining tablespoon oil and grill until lightly toasted, 1 to 2 minutes per side, then rub both sides with the cut side of the garlic clove.
- Cut each slice of bread in half and transfer to plates. Spoon the salad and any juices over the bread, then top with the mozzarella.
PER SERVING 309 CAL, 17 G FAT (5.5 G SAT FAT), 7 MG CHOL, 452 MG SOD, 12 G PRO, 30 G CAR, 6 G FIBER
Why you should grill your vegetables first
Most ratatouille recipes call for adding all of the vegetables to the pan, others bake the eggplant and zucchini. But my favorite way to make ratatouille is to grill the vegetables first. Yes, it’s an extra step, but grilling the zucchini and eggplant add a slightly smokey, charred-in-a-good-way flavor to the dish that you can’t get otherwise. But if you don’t have a grill, you can just add diced zucchini and eggplant to the pan with the mushrooms and sauté them.
- 3 medium tomatoes, halved
- 1 medium eggplant, (about 1 1/2 pounds), cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices
- 1 large red onion, cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices
- 1 medium yellow squash, halved lengthwise
- 1 medium zucchini, halved lengthwise
- 1 1/4 cups Lawry's® Herb & Garlic With Lemon Marinade
- 4 ounces Parmesan cheese, shaved