Ratatouille Pizza

I’ve changed my blog theme again. I think I might have theme ADD. That’s one of the reasons I’ve stayed with wordpress.com, it’s incredible easy to change everything. I think I might stick with this one for awhile though. Last time I changed themes I wanted something cleaner, but what I ended up with felt heavy to me. It was just too manly. This is more what I was looking for; clean, light, with a little touch of girly. I like it, and I hope you do too.

In other news, I’ll Have What She’s Having now has a Facebook Page. I realized recently that I had advertised this on Twitter and Stumbled the page, but I never actually told my readers. I’m using it as a forum to share my posts as well as posts from other bloggers that catch my, plus the occasional food news.

And finally the recipe. I saw a photo in the most recent issue of Ricardo Magazine of Ratatouille Pizza and I knew I just had to try it.

This is the perfect time of year to make ratatouille; peppers, zucchinis, and eggplants are all at their peak. It’s great as a side a couple of times but then what? I like to use it as a pasta sauce for baked pasta dishes. Ricardo recommends canning it and using it at a pizza sauce in winter when vegetables are just kind of sad. I obviously couldn’t wait that long. I used his ratatouille  recipe (translated to English below) and some store bought pasta dough as I have yet to master the art of homemade pizza dough. I topped it with cooked Italian sausage and mozzarella.

This was hands down the best pizza I have ever made, and it was better than most delivery pizzas I’ve had too. This recipe is definitely a keeper. The photos I took were all a little out of focus, but I’m sharing anyway because this was just so good.

As this is a magazine recipe I will be submitting it to Magazine Monday. It’s been forever since I did a Magazine Monday Post so for those of you who don’t know, it’s an informal blog event hosted by Ivonne over at Cream Puffs in Venice. Make a magazine recipe, send her the link, and she’ll share it with her readers. Easy peasy.
Ratatouille

  • 1 medium egglant, cut into small cubes
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1/2 mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 zucchinis, sliced
  • 1 green pepper, diced
  • 1 can diced tomatoes or 2 cups Italian tomatoes diced
  • 2 sprigs thyme
  • 5-10 basil leaves, chopped
  • olive oil for frying
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. In a very large pot on medium high, heat about 2 tbsp olive oil. Add the diced eggplant to the pot along with a touch of salt and pepper, brown the eggplant. Once browned, remove the eggplant from the pot and set aside in a large bowl.
  2. In the same pot brown the diced onion, adding more oil if necessary. Once browned add the onion to the eggplant bowl.
  3. Brown the sliced mushroom then add them to the eggplant and onion.
  4. Brown the zucchinis and green pepper, along with some salt and pepper.
  5. Add the tomato to the zucchini and green peppers, followed by the eggplant/onion/mushrooms. Add the time sprigs to the pot then simmer for 30 minutes.
  6. Remove the time sprigs then stir in the fresh basil. Turn off the heat.
Serve as a side dish, pasta sauce or on pizza.
Ratatouille Pizza
  • Pizza dough
  • Ratatouille
  • Italian sausage, sliced and cooked
  • Mozzarella Cheese
  • Basil for garnish
  1. Preheat the oven to 450.
  2. Roll out the pizza dough then place it on a greased and floured baking sheet.
  3. Top with the ratatouille as a sauce, then the sausage and cheese.
  4. Bake until the crust is golden and the cheese is bubbling, about 10 minutes (keep an eye on it!)
  5. Garnish with fresh basil.
Enjoy!

Quinoa Puttanesca


I like food that comes with a good story. Food with a story has been passed down through generations and is pretty much guaranteed to be good. Pasta a la Puttanesca is one of those foods. As the story goes, it was invented by prostitutes in Naples (“puttanas”). Whatever you think of the profession, you will probably agree that the sauce is pretty darn good.

It is also very easy to put together. The ingredients are sauteed together quickly and then tossed with pasta. I decided to mix things up a but by using the sauce with quinoa. It made an excellent side dish; I served it with some baked talapia and a salad for a tasty, healthy meal. I also had some leftover for lunch with some goat cheese.

Most puttanesca sauce recipes contain garlic, anchovies, peppers, olives and capers. If you like all those ingredients, use them. If not, leave something out or replace it with something you do enjoy. Having a story doesn’t make a recipe un-alterable.

Quinoa Puttanesca

  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp anchovy paste
  • chili flakes to taste
  • pepper to taste
  • 1 red pepper, diced
  • 1/4 cup olives, diced
  • parley, chopped
  1. Cook the quinoa as per package instructions.
  2. As the quinoa is cooking, heat the olive oil in a large pan. Sautee the onions until translucent. Add the garlic and anchovy paste, sautee until you can smell the garlic.Add the spices.
  3. Add the red pepper and olives, stir until the red peppers are slightly cooked. Stir in the parley.
  4. Mix the sauce with the cooked quinoa.

Note: I didn’t add any salt to this recipe because the anchovies and olives add quite a bit. If you are omitting either, taste the sauce to see if it needs any salt.

Enjoy!

Daring Cooks : Eggs Benedict

Jenn and Jill have challenged The Daring Cooks to learn to perfect the technique of poaching an egg. They chose Eggs Benedict recipe from Alton Brown, Oeufs en Meurette from Cooking with Wine by Anne Willan, and Homemade Sundried Tomato & Pine Nut Seitan Sausages (poached) courtesy of Trudy of Veggie num num.

This is my first Daring Cooks Challenge. I joined the Daring Bakers because I love to bake, and although I love the baking challenges that we’ve done so far, I wanted to try something a little tougher. Enter the Daring Cooks. Baking comes naturally to me, cooking does not. The Daring Cooks will definitely push me to try things I would never otherwise do.

December 12th is my moms birthday. Since she already had dinner plans (busy girl) I decided to make her and my family Eggs Benedict for brunch. Eggs Benedict are opened faced sandwiches traditionally made with English muffins, Canadian bacon, poached eggs and Hollandaise sauce. You may have seen poached eggs on my blog before, like here and here, but I’ve always used a poach pod to make them. Now that I’m a Daring Cook I had to do it old school, that is, poor ‘em into some hot water and hope for the best. Actually that’s not technically true. I did a lot of research to figure out the best way to poach an egg, and as luck would have the episode of Good Eats where Alton Brown makes Eggs Benedict aired on Food Network Canada a week before I planned to make them. Armed with this knowledge I felt pretty confident about the eggs. I was still pretty nervous about the Hollandaise sauce though,as overcooking the eggs is really easy to do.

I used a loaf from Premiere Moisson instead of the english muffins, mostly because  I forgot to buy the muffins. I also used regular bacon instead of Canadian bacon, (I have to say that as a Canadian I have never actually had Canadian bacon).

I started the process by cooking the bacon. Next I made the Hollandaise. For a few moments I was worried that I had curdled the eggs, but I whipped like a mad woman and managed to save them. Next I poached the eggs in a very large pot with four small bowls placed in it, as Alton suggested when poaching for a large group. I toasted the bread while the eggs poached then assembled.

I have to say I was quite pleased with the results. My first Hollandaise was rich and creamy, my eggs were cooked to with a slightly runny yolk (just how I like them), and the bacon was .. well it was bacon. You can’t really go wrong with bacon. The only issue I had was it was a little difficult to remove some of the eggs from their bowls, I broke two of the yolks.

Eggs Benedict

For the Hollandaise

  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1 tsp water
  • 1/4 tsp sugar
  • 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter cold, cut into small pieces
  • 3 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • cayenne pepper to taste

For the eggs

  • eggs
  • vinegar or lemon juice (1 tsp per cup of water used)
  • salt

For assembly:

  • Bread
  • Bacon
  • Green onion (optional)
  1. Make Hollandaise. Set up a double boiler; fill a large sauce pan with 1 inch of water bring to a boil then simmer. In a mixing bowl that will fit over the sauce pan whisk the egg yolks with the tsp of water until the colour has lightened, about 3 minutes. Add the sugar then whisk for 30 more seconds. Place the bowl over the sauce pan and whisk for 2 to 5 minutes until the mixture coats the back of a spoon. Take the bowl off the heat and add the butter one piece at a time, whisking until it is completely incorporated, place the bowl back over the simmering water if necessary to ensure the butter melts completely. Stir in the lemon juice, salt and cayenne.
  2. Poach the eggs: Place four small bowls in a large pot, fill with water until the bowls are covered by a quarter inch. Add vinegar and salt to the water. Bring to a boil then remove from the heat. Add one egg to each bowl the cover and let sit for 7-8 minutes for a runny yolk, longer if you prefer the yolks to be more cooked. Remove the eggs with a slotted spoon.
  3. Assemble the sandwich: Place a few pieces of bacon on each slice of bread, top with poached eggs and pour Hollandaise sauce over eggs. Sprinkle with cayenne and garnish with green onion.

Enjoy!