Strolling through a farmer’s market recently, I had some random memories of taking my cousins to see the Disney/Pixar film, Ratatouille, several years ago. The star was a cute rat that also happened to be a chef. I realize it was just an animated movie with a very imaginative plot … but I remember being pretty impressed with the cooking scenes nonetheless. As the movie title suggested, ratatouille was a highlighted dish. While I looked through the veggies in the market, my whimsical state of mind lead me to creating this recipe.
What exactly is ratatouille? It’s basically a vegetable stew with common ingredients consisting of eggplant, zucchini, peppers, onions, tomatoes, garlic and spices. For my recipe, I chose to leave out the eggplant completely and threw in a few pieces of sweet Italian chicken sausage. I picked up some purple peppers, wax beans, yellow squash, onion, garlic and a can of diced tomatoes with spices. For additional flavor, I sautéed my base in some delicious Milanese Gremolata olive oil, which I purchased at a local vinegar and oil specialty store. The oil contained hints of lemon, garlic, parsley and mint.
I found that many recipes did not suggest any accompaniments with the stew. However, I thought it would be nice to serve it with something. I prepared some garlic & parsley linguine that completed the meal perfectly!
- 2 tablespoons flavored olive oil (I used Milanese Gremolata Olive Oil)
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2-3 links fully cooked Sweet Italian Chicken Sausage, cut into 1/2” slices (I used Thin & Trim)
- 1 large yellow squash, cut into 1/2” slices and halved/quartered (depending on preferred size)
- 1 1/2 cups purple peppers, seeded and coarsely chopped
- 2 cups wax beans, ends removed and beans snapped into 1” pieces
- 14.5 oz can Diced Tomatoes with Basil, Garlic & Oregano
- Salt & Pepper
- Cooked pasta (I used La Pasta's Garlic & Parsley Linguine)
- Heat flavored olive oil in large skillet over medium heat. Add onions and garlic and sauté until tender, about 3-4 minutes. Stir in sliced chicken sausage and cook until the liquid begins to reduce, about 7 minutes.
- Reduce heat to low-medium. Stir in the squash, peppers and wax beans. Cook until vegetables begin to soften but are still firm, about 5 minutes. Pour in can of diced tomatoes and mix well. Salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a simmer, set heat to low, cover and cook for an additional 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Serve over cooked pasta.