I can get rather depressed when I eat colourless food. No one wants to feel like Oliver at the beginning of the film.
That is not going to happen with this meal.
There is also no need for it to be winter on your plate (or in your heart) even if the sky is lead and clay and temperatures have fallen below zero.
I decided I needed a big batch of something good to keep in the fridge as a healthy alternative to returning home ravenous after a day of work and eating a whole baguette before table time.
This does very nicely!
I also did it up with some avocado for dinner instead of the mango and that was equally delicious and pretty.
Time : 40 minutes (not of actual doing, most of it is just sort of waiting around, drinking coffee and flipping through Vogue)
You will need: (for six people or yourself on repeat)
1 red pepper
3 large tomatoes
3 cloves of garlic
200 g unsweetened tomato sauce
2 Tbsp of sweet chilli sauce (magic ingredient always :)
salt and pepper to taste
1 large can of kidney beans. I used a giant 800 g tin but you could use 400g. It really depends on the bean to vegetable ratio you're going for (black beans or lentils would work fine too)
1. Finely chop the garlic cloves and throw them into a large saucepan without turning on the heat.
2. Chop the zucchini, the eggplant, the red pepper and the tomatoes into cubes. Throw them into a large pan with the garlic and turn the heat on medium.
Immediately pour 1 cup of water over them so that they don't get angry. The vegetables will look rather insipid and far too white to begin with but given some time they'll start to look delicious.
3. After about 30 minutes of reading Vogue or painting nails purple add the tomato sauce, sweet chilli sauce and salt and pepper.
4. Wash and drain the kidney beans. (whhhy are they called kidney beans?! aren't all beans kidney-shaped? so unappealing.)
5. Pile them on top of the ratatouille and mix thoroughly through.
6. Serve with chunks of fresh mango. Alternatives are avocado, pumpkin seeds, basil! I added a spoon of chilli paste to my plate which was pretty amazing.
7. This is a really good meal to have hanging around in the fridge for a few days. It's friendly to everyone too so the vegans can come to tea.