I never actually liked Ratatouille that much, especially because my experience has been a bland mash of vegetables that resembled water more than anything. I always found myself hungry after eating it. However, after seeing the movie Ratatouille, my interested was piqued again. I noticed that in the movie, the dish was baked rather than cooked on the stove. It also appeared that the little rat chef, Remy, spread a tomato-y sauce in a casserole dish and topped it with zucchini and eggplant, thinly sliced. That was then topped with some sort of cover which allowed the veggies to steam in the sauce. That version is one I've never seen before and would like to try, but I have to admit that I'm a bit embarrassed to try a recipe I saw in a children's animated movie!
The following recipe is an adaptation from the Joy of Cooking's rendition. The eggplant turned out to be very flavorful in this rendition, but we still found ourselves somewhat hungry and protein-deprived after eating it. Be sure you eat something else with it!
1/4 cup olive oil
1 pound eggplant, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
1 pound zucchini, quartered and sliced
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 cups onions, chopped
1 large red bell peppers, cut into large chunks
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 cups sliced baby heirloom tomatoes
1 tablespoon dried thyme
1 bay leaf
1/4 cup chopped basil
Saute first three ingredients in a large skillet on high heat for 10 to 12 minutes until golden. Remove the vegetables to a bowl and heat the skillet on medium high heat. Cook the remaining olive oil and onions until softened. Add red pepper and garlic and cook for 8 to 12 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add the tomatoes, thyme and bay leaf, reduce heat to low, cover, and cook for 5 minutes. Add the eggplant and zucchini and cook 20 minutes more, covered. Add basil before serving. Serve over saffron rice.