Northwest NEWS

August 13, 2001

Home & Garden

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Dining In

Ratatouille
   1 small eggplant, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
   Salt and freshly ground black pepper
   2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
   2 large red bell peppers, seeded and cut into 3/4-inch pieces
   4 small zucchini, sliced
   1 onion, coarsely chopped
   4 cloves garlic, minced
   1 lb. tomatoes, chopped, or 1 can (28 oz.) whole tomatoes, drained and chopped
   1/3 c. chopped fresh basil
   Sprinkle eggplant lightly with salt and let drain for 30 minutes. Pat dry. In non-stick skillet heat 1 Tbsp. oil over medium high heat. Add eggplant. Stir and cook until softened and browned, about 6 minutes. Transfer eggplant to bowl.
   Add remaining oil to pan and heat until hot. Add red pepper, zucchini, onion and garlic. Cook vegetables, stirring, until tender, about 3-5 minutes. Mix in tomatoes, basil and eggplant. Stirring occasionally, cook on low heat 15 to 20 minutes or until all vegetables are very tender. Add salt and pepper to taste.
   Makes 6 servings.
  
   Great Grilled Fruit Kebabs
   2 Tbsp. canola oil
   2 Tbs. brown sugar
   2 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
   1 tsp. cinnamon
   4 1-inch slices pineapple, canned or fresh, cut into chunks
   2 apples, cored and cut in 1-inch pieces
   2 pears, pitted and cut in 1 -inch pieces
   2 peaches, nectarines or plums (or a mix), pitted and cut in 1-inch pieces
   2 bananas, peeled and cut in 1-inch pieces
   In small bowl, stir together oil, brown sugar, lemon juice and cinnamon until sugar is dissolved.
   Thread fruit alternately onto each of 8 skewers. Brush kebabs with oil mixture and place skewers on barbecue grill. Turn frequently until fruit starts to brown, about 6-8 minutes.
   Makes 8 servings.
  
   Whole Wheat Pasta with Summer Vegetable Sauce
   1 small yellow bell pepper, halved and seeded
   1/2 medium orange bell pepper, halved and seeded
   1 medium zucchini
   1 medium carrot
   1 garlic clove, minced
   1 tsp. grated orange zest
   1 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
   1-1/2 Tbsp. canola oil
   1/2 tsp. salt
   Pinch cayenne pepper
   1/2 c. finely chopped fresh basil leaves
   12 oz. whole wheat linguini
   2 large portabello mushrooms, stemmed
   1/2 c. chopped parsley, for garnish
   Cut bell pepper lengthwise into very thin strips. Halve zucchini crosswise, then lengthwise into quarters. Cut away soft part with seeds and discard. Cut squash lengthwise into very thin strips. Halve carrot crosswise, then lengthwise into quarters. Cut away light colored, woody center and discard. Cut carrots lengthwise into very thin strips.
   Place all vegetables in medium bowl. Add garlic, zest, vinegar, oil, salt, cayenne and basil. Toss well to combine. Set aside to marinate.
   Cook pasta according to package directions.
   Meanwhile, prepare mushrooms. Cut edges off each to make squares. Halve each crosswise.
   Slice away brown undersides, including gills, and discard, then slice into long, thin strips. Add to bowl. Toss well until mushrooms are moist and start to soften.
   Drain pasta. Divide among 4 shallow bowls or plates. Top each with quarter of the vegetables. Spoon over the marinating liquid. Garnish with parsley and serve.
   Makes 4 servings.
  
   Three Bean Salad
   1 can (about 15 oz.) kidney beans, rinsed and drained
   1 can (about 15 oz.) garbanzo beans, (chick peas), rinsed and drained
   1 can (about 15 oz.) corn, rinsed and drained (optional, in place of 1 can beans)
   1/2 c. fresh lemon juice
   2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
   4 garlic cloves, finely minced
   1/2 Tbsp. chili pepper flakes, or to taste
   3 Tbsp. crushed dried cilantro (coriander leaves)
   Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
   Mix beans and corn in large bowl and set aside.
   In blender, place juice, oil, garlic, chili flakses and cilantro (coriander). Puree until smooth and wel blended. Adjust seasonings if needed, adding salt and pepper to taste/
   Toss beans with dressing.
   Cover and chill, stirring occasonally, 3 to 4 hours or overnight.
   Makes 4 1-cup servings.