The classic French ratatouille is made by simmering eggplant with other vegetables and herbs. It's often served as a side or appetizer with bread, but our addition of Italian sausage turns it into a hearty meal for cooler months.
- 3 to 4 links (about 3/4 pound) Italian sausage
- 4 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 medium-size eggplant, peeled and cut into a 3/4-inch dice
- 2 small zucchini, halved and sliced
- 1 large onion, quartered and thinly sliced
- 1 medium-size green bell pepper, halved, seeded, and sliced
- 2 to 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 cups canned diced tomatoes
- 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon tomato paste
- Salt and pepper
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
- 3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
- Bring a medium-size pot of water to a boil. Puncture the sausage links in several places, then cook them at a low boil until they're no longer pink in the center, about 14 minutes. Transfer the links to a plate to cool, then slice them into 1/4-inch-thick rounds.
- Over medium-high heat, warm 3 tablespoons of the olive oil in a large, deep skillet or Dutch oven. Add the eggplant and zucchini and sauté them, stirring often, until they are lightly browned but not soft, about 7 minutes. Transfer the vegetables to a plate.
- In the same skillet over medium heat, warm the remaining olive oil. Add the onion and bell pepper and sauté them for 3 minutes. Stir in the garlic and sliced sausage and sauté, stirring often, for 3 minutes more. Stir in the tomatoes, eggplant, and zucchini.
- Partially cover the skillet and gently simmer the ratatouille for 5 minutes. Add the tomato paste, along with salt and pepper to taste, and simmer 5 minutes more. Stir in the parsley and half of the basil. Serve hot, sprinkled with the remaining basil. Serves 6.
This recipe is from Family Fun magazine.
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