Ratatouille Omelettes

Who's seen the new movie, Ratatouille? It's such a fun movie, for both kids and adults, and features -- get this! -- a rat who learns about life while learning how to make ratatouille (pronounced rat-a-TOO-ee), the classic French dish that's been a personal favorite for many years. Here, I share the recipe for a quick-cook ratatouille and wrap it in omelettes for a quick supper or hearty breakfast.

Ratatouille Omelettes

Ratatouille is fresh summer goodness flick-wise and food-wise for Little Chefs and big chefs both.

Last week I chose my words carefully with a 13-year old. “Do you like rat-a-TOO-ee?” Not unexpectedly, he was certain I meant this summer’s Disney hit movie and flashed a grin. “We haven’t seen it yet but we’re going to!” But when I asked if he knew that ratatouille is food, too, his eyes filled, as if the idea of ratatouille for supper meant eating, well, Wilbur or Bambi or Nemo.

So parents, here’s the chance to introduce the family to eggplant, whose plump globes are inexpensive and available year-round though especially beautiful from now through fall. Then head out to meet Remy, a wannabe chef and a most endearing rat. You’ll smile throughout, laugh out loud often, then emerge confident, yes, that "Anyone Can Cook".

ALANNA's TIPS Ratatouille is great tucked into thin omelettes but can also be served warm as a vegetable, cold as a salad, even slathered with goat cheese onto bread for a quick sandwich or appetizer. It keeps and even improves overnight so can be made in advance. I’ve never had trouble with bitter eggplant but if this is a worry, before cooking, sprinkle salt over the cubes and let drain in a colander for 30 minutes. If needed, substitute half a small can of diced tomatoes, drained, for the fresh tomato. In the photo, note how beautifully the omelette has browned? The trick to getting good color in an omelette is just a tiny smidge of mustard. In 2002, my second Kitchen Parade column featured this long-time favorite recipe favorite for yes, Ratatouille.
Kitchen Parade is written by second-generation food columnist Alanna Kellogg and features fresh, seasonal dishes for every-day healthful eating and occasional indulgences. Do you have a favorite movie-inspired recipe that other Kitchen Parade readers might like? Just send me a quick e-mail via recipes@kitchen-parade.com. Quick Suppers are Kitchen Parade favorites and feature recipes easy on the budget, the clock, the waistline and the dishwasher. How to print a Kitchen Parade recipe. If you like Kitchen Parade, you're sure to like my food blog about vegetable recipes, too, A Veggie Venture. Follow Kitchen Parade on Facebook!

QUICK SUPPER:
RATATOUILLE OMELETTES

A food hit worthy of a hit movie
Hands-on time: 20 minutes for the ratatouille plus 5 - 10 minutes per omelette
Makes enough ratatouille for 8 omelettes
    QUICK RATATOUILLE
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 yellow or white onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pound eggplant, cut in ½” cubes
  • 1 zucchini, cut in ½“ cubes
  • 1 green pepper, chopped
  • 4 tinned anchovies (optional for Nemo lovers and anchovy haters)
  • 1 large good tomato, chopped (see ALANNA’s TIPS)
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • Salt & pepper to taste
    PER OMELETTE
  • 1 large egg plus 1 or 2 egg whites
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard (see TIPS)
  • Salt to taste
    TO GARNISH, OPTIONAL
  • Grated Parmesan or another cheese
  • Snippings of fresh herbs

QUICK RATATOUILLE Heat oil in a large non-stick skillet on medium high til shimmery. Add onion and garlic, cook til just soft. Add eggplant, zucchini, pepper and anchovies as prepped, stirring often. Add tomato and vinegar; let cook til vegetable are done and liquid cooked out. Season to taste and transfer to warm dish. Lightly wipe out skillet.

OMELETTES Whisk egg, egg white(s), water and mustard. For each omelette, heat same skillet on medium, add egg, swirl to cover entire bottom, sprinkle with salt, let cook until beginning to firm. Place a scoop of ratatouille on one half, then fold other half over top. Continue cooking another minute or two.

TO SERVE Sprinkle with cheese and herbs if using, and serve immediately.

NUTRITION ESTIMATE Per Omelette: 178 Calories; 10g Tot Fat; 2g Sat Fat; 10g Carb; 3g Fiber; 218mg Sodium; 247mg Cholesterol; 13g Protein; Weight Watchers Old Points 4, PointsPlus 5

Eggs for Breakfast, Eggs for Dinner

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This looks like a perfect light summer meal!

7/13/2007
 
What a balanced breakfast as well. You get the proteins, veggies and maybe some carbs. Yum!

7/13/2007
 
We went to see the movie, me lamenting we had no little ones to take. We both really enjoyed the movie. But I missed out not getting that Remy now has Bambi status.
Yes, I do enjoy ratatouille and it would excellent in an omelette.

7/14/2007
 
That's ratatouille?! I grow eggplants and make a mess of this every year (minus the anchovies, of course). We love it with melted cheese over the top. I have four plants and they're full of blooms. It should be a very good year - yum!

7/15/2007
 
Alanna,
That's a great idea.

7/20/2007
 
Now this I could totally do! I have been seeing online lots of scrumptious, perfectly mandolined ratatouilles - which I KNOW I would mess up....but your Omelette is my kinda messy-throw-it-together style.
 

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Thank you for taking a moment to write! I read each and every comment, for each and every recipe. If you have a specific question, it's nearly always answered quick-quick. But I also love hearing your reactions, your curiosity, even your concerns! When you've made a recipe, I especially love to know how it turned out, what variations you made, what you'll do differently the next time. ~ Alanna