SERVES 12 TO 16
Ciambotta, similar to French ratatouille, is a hearty vegetable stew of eggplant, zucchini, tomatoes, and unlike ratatouille, potatoes. The slow cooking blends the flavors of the vegetables and prevents them from losing their shape.
1/2 cup Filippo Berio Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
1 large Spanish onion, diced
2 ribs celery, diced
1/2 cup packed fresh basil leaves, chopped
5 plum tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and pureed
1 3/4 pounds potatoes, peeled and diced
1 pound eggplant, peeled and diced
1 pound zucchini, diced
1/2 cup water
Fine sea salt and coarsely ground black pepper to taste
1 large yellow pepper, cored, seeded, and cut into thin strips
In a large deep skillet or a Dutch oven, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté until soft. Add the celery and basil and sauté until the celery is soft. Add the tomatoes, potatoes, eggplant, zucchini, water, and salt and pepper, and stir well. Cover and cook over low heat for 20 minutes.
Add the pepper strips and cook for about 10 minutes more, or until the vegetables are tender but not mushy. Serve immediately.
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