Serves 4

Ratatouille (pictured right) comes in all sorts of guises but essentially it is a vegetable stew containing the ingredients below. The vegetables can be cut up small or big, neatly or roughly, but what matters most is the final flavour you get from cooking them all together. Nothing is more redolent of Provence.

Ratatouille (pictured right) comes in all sorts of guises but essentially it is a vegetable stew containing the ingredients below. The vegetables can be cut up small or big, neatly or roughly, but what matters most is the final flavour you get from cooking them all together. Nothing is more redolent of Provence.

4tbsp olive oil
1 medium onion, peeled and roughly chopped
3 cloves of garlic, peeled and crushed
2 red peppers, seeded and cut into rough 2cm dice
1 medium-sized aubergine, cut into rough 2cm chunks
1 large or 2 small courgettes, cut into rough 2cm chunks or thickly sliced
4 tomatoes, skinned, the seeds squeezed out and cut into chunks
A few sprigs of fresh marjoram, torn
A few sprigs of basil, torn
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Heat the olive oil in a large heavy-bottomed saucepan and cook the onions, garlic and red peppers for 4-5 minutes on a medium heat without colouring. Add the aubergine, courgette, tomatoes and marjoram, season with salt and pepper, cover with a lid and cook on a medium heat for 15 minutes, stirring every so often. Add the basil leaves and cook for another 5 minutes with the lid off, stirring occasionally. Re-season if necessary and serve.

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