My Easy French Ratatouille

Ratatouille di verdure al pomodoro

Preparation time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes
Serves 2

Difficulty: Easy


  • 1 medium onion, peeled and sliced (red if possible)
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled and crushed
  • 2 small courgettes
  • 2 red or yellow peppers
  • 4 medium potatoes
  • 300 ml tomato sauce
  • ½ a bunch of fresh basil, (if you do not have fresh, add saffron instead)
  • extra virgin olive oil q.b.
  • salt, pepper
  • 2 teaspoons chopped thyme (and/or other provencal herbs)

How to make it

  1. First, get all the vegetables washed, peeled and chopped into 2.5 cm chunks.
  2. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large casserole pan over a low heat with the onion and the garlic.
  3. After 10 minutes add the chopped potatoes and peppers.
  4. Ten minutes later add the courgettes and a good pinch of salt, black pepper and the torn basil leaves (or saffron) and thyme leaves.
  5. Mix well, add the tomato sauce.
  6. Simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, adding water if needed.
  7. Season with salt, add the thyme leaves.
  8. Serve (hot or cold) either alongside roasted or grilled meats and fish or as a vegetarian main course over rice or couscous.


I cook all the vegetables in the same pan even if the original recipe requires them to be cooked separately, but on the boat first I haven’t so many pans and second I prefer to use the water to take a shower rather than to clean them.

I have mainly two versions of this recipe: one with fresh basil and the other with saffron (if I do not have the plant).


  • Ratatouille is a French Provençal culinary speciality from Nice, known as ratatouille niçoise, a stewed of summer vegetable dish. The word “ratatouille” comes from the Occitan ratatolha and the French touiller which mean stirring.
  • A Ratatouille “classic” consisted of tomatoes, courgettes, peppers plus garlic, onions and Provençal herbs.
  • It’s really similar to the Italian speciality “caponata” from Sicily in which vinegar, olives and capers are added.

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