After our Mother's Day feast, we had quite a bit of leftover Ratatouille, for which I was glad. This is such a simple, tasty dish that focuses on the essence of the roasted vegetables. The slow, oven roasting brings out the natural sweetness of the tomato, squash, peppers, and eggplants.
Inspiration struck when thumbing through my Elie Krieger cookbook, The Food You Crave. She makes a cornmeal crusted tart with ratatouille and mozzerella cheese. I decided to make her cornmeal crust, and spread a layer of rich tangy goat cheese under a fan of roasted veggies.
- 2/3 c yellow cornmeal
- 1/3 c whole rain pastry flour
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons canola oil
- 3 tablespoons water
- 2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 2 shallots, thinly sliced (about 1/3 cup)
- Cooking spray
- 1/2 pound thinly sliced eggplant rounds (about 1/3 medium eggplant)
- 1 zucchini, sliced into 1/8-inch rounds (about 8 ounces)
- 3 medium tomatoes, sliced thinly
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 3 ounces shredded goat cheese
- 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan
For the crust: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Combine cornmeal, pastry flour, and salt in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse to incorporate. Add butter and oil and pulse about 20 times, until mixture resembles small pebbles. Add water and pulse until mixture forms a loose dough. Remove dough from processor and press into bottom and about 1/8-inch up the sides of a 9-inch tart pan with a detachable rim. Press aluminum foil into the bottom and sides of the pan on top of the dough and weigh down with uncooked rice or pie weights. Place tart pan on a baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and remove rice and foil. Return to oven and bake for an additional 5 minutes, or until no longer shiny and wet. Remove from oven and let cool.
For the filling: Increase the oven to 400 degrees F. Heat 1 teaspoon of olive oil in a nonstick pan over medium heat; saute shallots until soft, about 5 to 6 minutes. Spray 2 baking trays with cooking spray. Arrange the eggplant, zucchini and tomato slices on the trays in a single layer and brush with the remaining olive oil. Season with salt and pepper, and roast the vegetables until soft but not browned, about 15 minutes. Remove the vegetables from oven and cool.
Lower the oven temperature to 350 degrees F. Spread the tart shell with goat cheese. Lay the eggplant slices in 2 layers on the bottom of tart; Add the vegetables in lovely pattern. Top with Parmesan. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until cheese is melted and vegetables have further wilted. Remove from oven, let cool for 5 minutes, and cut into 8 slices. Serve warm.