Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Ratatouille with Cornmeal Thyme Crust

This is kind of similar to my last post flavor-wise. If you feel cheated, too bad! I was just bent on making one big tart with all those tomatoes. Throw in some zucchini and voila - RATATOUILLE! I embellished my version with a crunchy cornmeal thyme crust, carmelized onions and goat cheese. Besides being visually appealing, this was incredibly delicious. A blend of contrasting textures and flavors made for a perfect little lunchtime treat. It's also been fun having my husband around during the day to try out my concoctions. He approved of this one!

You may not know it, but my kitchen is pretty tiny and I finally decided to let my food processor live on the much-coveted counter space.....for the time being. Even though it is an eyesore, when I see it sitting there, it reminds me of how easy it is to whip up a little dough for crust. It makes me happy.

On to the recipe:

Ratatouille with Cornmeal Thyme Crust

1 cup cornmeal
1/2 cup flour
1/2 tsp. salt
3 T. butter
2 T. olive oil
1 T. fresh thyme
4-5 T. cold water
Put all ingredients except water in food processor. Pulse until crumbly mixture forms. Add the water and pulse until the dough forms. Put it in your tart pan and push it around until its evenly spread up the sides. Bake at 375 for 10 minutes. You can weigh it down with rice or beans, over foil. I didn't do that because I felt like the cornmeal wouldn't puff up much. I was right. This is a dense crunchy crust, so don't expect your grandma's flakey version!
1 medium onion, sliced
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 oz. goat cheese
1-2 thinly sliced zucchini
3-4 thinly sliced tomatoes
2 basil cubes (from Trader Joe's frozen section*)
1 T. olive oil
Saute onion until it becomes carmelized (at least 10 minutes). Add the garlic during the last 2 minutes. Put onion mixture on top of the crust. Crumble goat cheese evenly on top of onions. Starting in the middle, layer the tomatoes and zucchini in a concentric pattern. Put the basil cubes into the olive oil and mix together. Brush this mixture on top of the veggies and then sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. Bake at 375 for about 30-35 minutes.
* Small packs of frozen herbs that come in packages of 20 cubes. Each cube = 1 tsp. fresh herbs. The package has a red lid, if you are looking for it in their freezer section. They are so handy - I always have basil, garlic and parsley in my freezer.


Holler said...

Mmmmmm, absolutely gorgeous! i think you should keep your food processor sitting exactly where it is :)

Coffee and Vanilla said...


This ratatouille looks amazing and cornmeal crust sounds very interesting... especially with addition of thyme... must try it soon :)