Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Ratatouille Again...after AIP

This dish always made a hit–it’s hearty peasant fare with a slightly sophisticated air, and I'd been missing it (you can see our original recipe here.)  I've since discovered that nightshade vegetables and I are not good friends, so today I worked up a new version that works better with my dietary needs.

Nightshades, as you may know, don't do well with arthritis or many autoimmune situations, so I'm mostly skipping tomatoes, potatoes, peppers, and eggplant (*sob!*)...and all but potatoes are liable to show up in a traditional recipe for this dish!

I love summer squash and we had both yellow and zucchini, so I just used them and a bit of what we had on hand to fill it out.  Turned out it filled it out a LOT, I've got a huge pot of it.  Good thing we both liked it!
Sweet Italian sausage and onion
1-2 lbs sweet Italian sausage

1 Vidalia or sweet yellow onion, chopped
4-5 cloves of fresh garlic, give or take (we love garlic!)
2 summer squash (yellow or zukes or both), chopped
2 medium carrots, sliced
1 stalk celery (optional)
I had a piece of white sweet potato I cubed and threw in...a bit too sweet, I think...
Mushrooms would be good...didn't have any...

Extra virgin olive oil
Spices to taste – basil, oregano, extra fennel
Salt and pepper to taste 
Splash of white wine (we had leftover) or a little water if needed...
Note: as each item is browned, it is added to a large pot on low heat on the back burner. To brown this much you either need a BIG skillet (ours is an antique chicken fryer made of enameled iron, with a lid) or you can do it in smaller batches and then dump it all together to finish cooking. (Otherwise it just sort of steams...)

Brown cut-up or broken-up sausage in a little oil.

Brown onion in oil and grease from sausage. 
Joseph likes  carrots really done, so I sauteed them with the celery...add the chopped summer squash and brown them together.

Everything should now be put together in the large pot which you will leave on low heat for at least a couple of hours prior to serving.

Saute' carrots, celery and sweet potato, if you've used it...

Zucchini and yellow summer squash...
A little fresh AND dried basil--the dried was from last year's garden...

Toss in the basil, stir it all together, cover and simmer...

If you can stand NOT to eat this the same day, it gets even better overnight, as the flavors “marry.” 
You can also remove most of the fat, which rises to the top when cold--but if you've used good ingredients, this is good healthy fat your brain needs, and we don't remove it. (There will be a lot less fat, of course, if you’ve opted for turkey instead of pork sausage, but we virtually never do.)

I missed the green and red sweet peppers, sometimes miss tomato, but hey, it is what it is. (I didn't miss the eggplant!)  I'm still AIP, in the reintroduction phase...I can have fennel seeds with no problem, so I do!
Joseph pronounced this delicious, and I didn't mind it a bit myself...leftovers will be more than welcome!
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