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Friday, May 4, 2012

Pastina and Turkey with "Ratatouille"

So I had some yellow squash and zucchini that I needed to use. I took some inspiration from an unlikely source, Disney Pixar's children's film Ratatouille. In the climatic scene Remy the chef rat prepares a colorful mandolin sliced ratatouille topped with a pretty tomato sauce. I lacked the bell pepper and eggplant that makes a REAl ratatouille, but I decided to go ahead and use my mandolin to make thin, even slices of my squashes and also some sweet Vidalia onion. I made my tomato sauce from a can of petite diced tomatoes and the last of my carrot soup mixed together with the immersion blender. I also added a teaspoon of Italian spices to that. In the bottom of an 8 x 11 pan I spooned about a quarter of a cup of my "sauce" and spread it thinly over the bottom. I took the veggie slices and arranged them in long rows of alternating colors, yellow and green. I salt and peppered the veggies and then spooned some more of my "sauce" over the top and grated over all some fresh parmesan cheese. I cooked it in a 350 degree oven, covered with foil, for about 40 minutes, then I removed the cover and turned off the heat and let it stay in there for another 5 minutes. Meanwhile I prepared a quarter of a box of pastina (pasta stars). When they were cooked I strained them with a strainer, since they pasta is so small it would fall through the holes in my colander. I mixed the pastina with turkey from a turkey breast I roasted and spooned my "not for real ratatouille" over top. Yum! The leftover sauce was refrigerated and I am going to use it as pizza sauce for tonight's dinner of whole wheat pizza and eggplant pizza. To make eggplant "pizzas" slice an eggplant into rounds, place it on a cooling rack over a rimmed baking sheet. Heavily salt the rounds on both sides and allow to sit until the eggplant has released most of it's water. Rinse and dry the eggplant rounds, top with sauce, cheese and toppings and broil until cheese is bubbly and eggplant is cooked. A low carb pizza pie! Both pizzas will be served with salad and we will have ice cream for dessert. Have a great Friday!


  1. Have you ever done spaghetti squash? I love it (I'm not a huge pasta fan, actually). Also, a lot of the veggie cookbooks recommend making noodles from zucchini.

    The eggplant sounds great! I have some eggplant in my fridge and I think I'll give that a try.

  2. I adore spaghetti squash, I love topping it with spaghetti sauce and parmesan or tossing the "noodles" with brown butter and toasted almond slivers.

  3. My brown butter always turns into black butter (seriously, I ruined two batches just trying to melt butter the other day). I'm generally a pretty good cook, but I'm not good with things that require patience and watching over.