Ratatouille with couscous; a bit of a vegetable stew

Ratatouille is a rich, vegetable stew that originates from the Provence region of France.

This hearty dish tastes wonderful on a cold winter evening and is really easy to make.

Traditionally ratatouille is eaten with crusty bread or rice; I served my version with couscous as its fluffy texture is perfect for soaking up the thick sauce.

Most recipes also add chopped aubergine – I am not a fan and therefore omitted it from mine – but if it tickles your fancy, add some at the beginning with the rest of the veg.



Ratatouille with couscous

Recipe serves 2-4 (depending on how hungry you are)

  • 1 red onion
  • 1 courgette
  • 2 red peppers
  • 500 grams passatta
  • 10 -12 basil leaves
  • 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1 tsp dried herbs de Provence
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp each of black pepper and sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 50 grams couscous per person


  • Finely slice the onion, chop the courgette and peppers into chunks. Pre-heat the oven to 200 degrees.
  • In a large casserole dish fry off the vegetables and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
  • Roughly chop the basil leaves and set aside until later. Finely slice the stalks and add to the vegetable mixture.
  • When the vegetables are golden and softened, stir in the passata, balsamic vinegar and sugar.
  • Cover the pan and transfer to the oven to cook for 30 to 35 minutes until the sauce reduces.
  • Make the couscous according to the packet instructions – I always use chicken stock for added flavour.
  • Add the chopped basil leaves and serve.




All good things come in threes…

On the third day of Christmas my true love gave to me, three French hens, two turtle doves and a partridge in a pear tree…

Petit quiche Lorraine x3 

For today’s recipe we are going all continental with my mini quiches. Eggs are the principal ingredient in quiche, and while the hens might be of Irish descent, this recipe is named after Lorraine – a region in France – thus ticking the boxes for day three of this Christmas food journey. Continue reading