Simple Zucchini Ratatouille

This is another one of those highly adaptable recipes I love so much. I’ve been making this for years in different incarnations and finally decided to take note of what I actually do. This makes a great topping for pasta, like a thick vegetable tomato sauce. Or if you choose to let it cook down and dry out a bit, it’s a great ratatouille that goes great with grilled meat, or even just some nice crusty bread. This recipe is structured so that it is relatively quick to make; There are some shortcuts in here that you can choose to use, or not to use. The point of this recipe is that it’s delicious, relatively healthy, and won’t take you all day to cook.

Serves: 2-4 with pasta (2 very hungry people, or 4 if you’re into portion control), or 4 servings as a side dish
Total time: 30-40 minutes

Ingredients:
4 small zucchini (courgettes, if you’re British)
1/4 cup olive oil
1 medium yellow onion
1.5 tablespoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon basil
1/2 teaspoon of salt
A pinch of chili flakes (more or less according to your tastes, I find about a pinch adds enough heat for me)
1 cup pasta sauce (I prefer Bertolli’s)
1/4 cup red wine
*1/2 cups of water (if you’re making it as a sauce to have with pasta)
*4 cups of cooked pasta (if you’re having it on pasta)
*4 tablespoons of shredded parmesan (if you’re having it on pasta)

Instructions:
1. Dice the onion and zucchini into small chunks.
2. Pour olive oil into a pan on medium-high heat and wait until the olive oil looks glossy.
3. Add the onion and zucchini to the pan, and stir regularly until they get slightly brown.
4. Lower the heat to medium and add the salt, basil, garlic powder, and chili. Stir well to coat.
5. Keep stirring while it saut├ęs, maybe another 5 minutes until the onions and zucchini start to get a little soft.
6. Add the pasta sauce and red wine. Cook another 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
7. When the mixture starts drying out, add water if you’re using it for pasta. If you’re using it as a side dish, leave it be and it’s nearly done. Stir well to mix it together and leave it to simmer however long you want. It depends on what texture you like for your zucchini. If you want it really soft it’ll take another 10-15 minutes.

Notes: If you have the extra time, this would benefit from using diced fresh garlic instead of garlic powder. It would just be thrown in with the onions and zucchini in step 3. Also, you could try using canned chopped tomatoes instead of pre-made pasta sauce, but you’d have to add more seasoning to it or else it’d be pretty bland. The recipe is highly adaptable depending on how much time you want to spend on it!