ratatouille clafoutis
 

(serves 6-8)

 

Variations on Classics
This savory recipe pairs the ingredients of a traditional French ratatouille with the method used to make clafoutis, a simple dessert usually made with custard and fruit.  Featuring eggplant and other fresh summertime vegetables, the result is a vegetarian main course or side dish that adds a burst of rich flavor and color to your meal.

INGREDIENTS 
Tomato Garlic Confit
1 pint cherry tomatoes
8 cloves garlic, peeled
4 sprigs fresh thyme
3/4 cup olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

Vegetable Filling
1 pound eggplant, sliced in 1/4 inch thick        rounds
3/4 pound zucchini, sliced in 1/4 inch          thick rounds
1 small red onion, sliced
1 orange or yellow bell pepper, stem and     seeds removed, sliced in 1/4 inch thick     strips
3 Tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

Custard
3 eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup all purpose flour
1 1/2 cups milk
4 ounces goat cheese, crumbled in large         chunks
1/4 cup kalamata olives, chopped

METHOD
Butter a 10-inch cake pan and cut out a parchment circle to line the bottom.  Butter the parchment too.  Set aside.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Combine tomatoes, garlic, thyme and olive oil in an ovenproof dish.  Season with salt and pepper.  Bake for about 30 minutes until garlic is soft.  Remove the thyme sprigs and set aside the Tomato Garlic Confit until serving.

Arrange eggplant and zucchini on a sheet pan.  Brush lightly with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.  Bake in oven for about 20 minutes until just tender, before the vegetables starts to brown and dry up.  Flip the vegetables half way through baking.

In a medium nonstick skillet, heat olive oil.  Add onions and bell peppers.  Sauté until softened and onions are translucent.  Allow all vegetables to cool slightly before proceeding.

In a medium sized bowl, combine eggs, flour, and milk.  Whisk until thoroughly combined.

Arrange the eggplant in a circular pattern, filling the bottom of the cake pan.  Spread the onion and bell pepper mixture on top.  Distribute the goat cheese next and follow with kalamata olives.  Finish by adding the  zucchini in a circular layer on top.  Gently pour the custard mixture over the top.  Bake for about 30 minutes until the center of the clafoutis is set and no longer liquid.  Allow to cool for several minutes.  Flip out onto a serving plate.  Use a large knife to cut wedges.  Top with tomato confit and serve.  Refrigerate any leftovers.  

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