Monday, January 17, 2011

Mexican Ratatouille?

This is another one of the dishes I grew up with, well kind of...
There is a Spanish name for 2 dishes made in a similar fashion..  If you omit the Pasilla peppers then it is called "calabazitas con queso" If you Omit the "calabazitas" (meaning the squash) it would be called "Rajas con queso", I love both and one day I asked myself why can't they both be together? I mean they're made the same way pretty much.. and so I did.

The dish which is nameless in English  and maybe in Spanish too, is sort of a Mexican ratatouille, it consists of  zucchini or any squash you might want to use, (please feel free to experiment with this recipe!) tomatoes, garlic, onions (If you like them), Corn, the peppers (If you'd like.. I advice to use them as it gives it a nice smokey favor and really blackening them is not as hard or intimidating as it seems) and I top it all with cheese!

*If you want a figure friendly version top it off with Mozzarella cheese (It looks pretty with the melted round slices on top)  and keep it vegetarian. 

*If you need meat in it I would suggest cubed or shredded chicken (skip the cheese)  Or Italian sausage and keep the cheese!.

As with all the recipes here get creative you do not have to recreate this 100%  Use what you like and feel comfortable with!  Have some fun!


3 Pasilla peppers
4 Italian zucchini squash
4 Roma tomatoes
1 can of corn
1 small can of tomato sauce
minced, or powdered garlic.
Cheese (any melting cheese you'd like)
salt and pepper to taste.

Start by blackening the peppers (If you have an electric stove I am not sure if it will work unless you grill them)  After they are black meaning the skin is burned quickly place them inside a towel so they "sweat" and set them aside.

(excuse my black drip pans I need new ones  he he)

In a large pan, add a bit of Extra Virgin Olive Oil, some minced Garlic and Onions (if you are using them)
Cut the zucchini in half lenght wise and then chop into pieces, add to the oil with the garlic, if using garlic powder then you would add the powder to the zucchini.
I found a great way to have minced garlic handy I am in love with this as it is so finely minced it can blend in butter or any other sauces..

It is important you add the ingredients in that particular order as  you don't want  overcooked veggies.. If you are adding meat of course you would cook the meat in the garlic and onions first before adding the zucchini.

While that is cooking cut up the Roma tomatoes  in big chunks and add  them to the zucchini.
Take the peppers and with some running water remove the blackened skin, if there is some still left don't worry.  Cut the tops off and throw them away along with the seeds and cut what is left into strips and add them to the pot.

Drain your can off corn and add it to the pot along with the tomato sauce and 1/4 cup of water. Let it simmer for 3 minutes stir it, and add your cheese cover and simmer for 2 more minutes and you are done!
Easy right?

You can play with this, I eat bowls of it by itself but you can add meat..  you can serve over pasta and  you have yourself a complete meal!  I top it with a bit of Parmesan and sour cream .



  1. This looks good! I will have to try that sometime! I love anything Mexican.
    I have had recipes before that had me blacken peppers by putting them in an oven to broil on for maybe 5 minutes or so. That worked to blacken the skins pretty well. I can't remember if you had to put them skin side down or up though. Anyway, thought I'd pass along another option to blacken the skins. :)


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