Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Ratataouille_WW 1pt

I've been struggling with writing a post, not because I hadn't cooked anything that merited posting, but because I didn't feel like I had anything particularly interesting to say. I don't think you come here to be bored, sure, of course you come for the recipes, but humor me and tell me you come for the commentary and stories too. Lately, I just feel like I've been trying to catch my bearings with the new job and the new commute, a commute which gets me home about an hour later than I used to, and which makes me feel all rushed at the end of the day.

However, the other day I was listening to The Splendid Table on American Public Media and the host was interviewing a couple who had recently written a book titled "What We Eat When We Eat Alone: Stories and 100 Recipes" this got me thinking. There are certain things that I will not eat in front of people, even CB. Not because they are gross, but because they are weird. For example, when I am home alone, I will not only eat a spoonful of peanut butter, I will make a well in the peanut butter and squirt maple syrup into the well, and then I will top that with cool whip. Yes, this is what I eat when no one is looking, and I eat it at the refrigerator with all the ingredients on a shelf, and I just pull the ingredients out over and over until I have had enough. I eat this with the refrigerator door open in the off chance that CB comes home and I don't know, and he walks into the kitchen; the door is my buffer - it gives me a few seconds to shove the spoon in my mouth and then rearrange the peanut butter, syrup and cool whip so it doesn't look like they are lined up. I have other things that I eat when no one is home, but the PBSCW spoonful is pretty much my go to.

So, I ask, what do you eat when no one is home. The more gross the better. Also, if you have this book, or know anyone who has it, I'd love to borrow it.

Okay, on to the recipe. If I'm being honest with you, I have wanted to make this recipe for years. Ever since I saw the movie Ratatouille on DVD; like two years ago. I don't know what the hell I've been doing for two years that I was too busy to throw this recipe together, but I digress. I made it this weekend because the farmers market was just ripe with all of the ingredients. It is a Weight Watchers recipe, and I thought it was delicious, but I think CB thought it lacked a little um, flavor. Maybe if I had sauteed the onions and leeks in butter instead of pan spray he would have thought differently, but then it wouldn't have been a weight watchers recipe, now would it have been. I was very happy with it.

Here goes
Ratatouille | WW 1.5 pts

Makes 4 servings

  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 onion
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1 green bell pepper
  • 1 medium eggplant
  • 1 medium zucchini
  • 4 tomatoes
  • 1 cup tomato juice
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • fresh or dried herbs: basil, oregano, thyme, parsley
  • fresh grounded black pepper

Chop the onion.Cut bell peppers in thumb sized slices.Peel and dice eggplant.Dice zucchini.Peel, seed and chop tomatoes.

Heat the olive oil in a large nonstick pan over medium heat. Add onions and cook, stirring constantly until golden.

Add 1 cup water and the sliced bell peppers; cook, stirring frequently, until liquid has evaporated, 5 minutes.

Add 1 cup water, the eggplant and zucchini; cook, stirring frequently, until liquid has evaporated, 7 minutes.

Add tomatoes, tomato juice, garlic, basil, oregano, thyme and black pepper. Cover the pan and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally; add additional water if necessary.

Uncover, reduce heat to medium-low and continue cooking until vegetables are tender but still retain their shape and liquid has evaporated, 10 minutes.

Divide evenly among 4 plates, garnish with parsley and serve.

The Ratatouille may be served hot, cold or at room temperature.

Nutritional Information
per serving:
1.5 WW-Points
105 Calories
3 g Total Fat, 0 mg Cholesterol

Rating = Damn Good


AM said...

I'm here for stories and recipes. Stories are good, it's interesting to hear what other people are doing. How do you commute? Are you working in downtown Boston or the outskirts? During our brief foray into historic Boston we were very impressed with the traffic and drivers blocking intersections on a red light. I like to eat raw potatoes with a lot of salt. Husband can't stand to look when I do it.

JB said...

AM - When I was growing up my mom had a friend who used to eat potatoes raw like apples, I was always in awe of him when he did it.

As far as my commute - for the first time in 10 years I am driving to work. Its so different to have an active commute over a passive commute - I'm so used to parking my ass on the train and reading for my whole commute, and being able to relax. You just can't relax when you are driving in and around Boston everyday - I feel like I need to take 10 minutes of personal time when I get home just to destress from the commute. I'm sure I'll get used to it, and having Pandora on my black berry helps because I have complete control over the music that I listen to both ways.

Brenna said...

I love your story, and your sneaky snack. The morning after we have a party, when no one's up yet and I'm cleaning the mess, I love to put a few stale M&Ms and a hard pretzel mini in my mouth together and chew slowly so they get all mixed up.

Erin D said...

Love your stories! I haven't done it in a long while, but I used to take a pat of butter, some flour, brown sugar, salt and choc chips and make a little makeshift three spoon cookie dough. I too am known to be caught with a mouthful of peanut butter (sometimes with choc chips), looking like the cat who got the canary. I also eat spoonfuls of maple syrup out of the jug. Mike's aunt eats raw hamburger with salt. now that's just gross.

Erin D said...

how could I forget a spoonful of carmel icecream topping that's been in the fridge forever, topped with a sprinkle of french grey salt. or a spoon of straight brown sugar. don't knock it til you try it :-)

JB said...

Well, salted caramel is an awesome candy treat. I've actually thought about making it from scratch.