My Grandmother’s Bohemienne Eggplant

Another Provençal classic we used to enjoy spending summer vacation at my grandmother’s. This dish is similar to the more widely known ratatouille, but simpler in its combination of ingredients, neither using zucchini nor bell peppers. Sometimes also known as ‘poor man’s ratatouille’, simple in its preparation, it is best prepared in an enameled cast iron pot with a cover, which evenly conducts the heat and is well suited for slow cooking.

We used to serve this accompanied by long grain Camargue rice. Here I served it using the other vegetables I received in our weekly share from the local farm in Chicago, which included delicious fresh greens and small red potatoes. When my boyfriend had his first taste, he exclaimed: “such a delicate flavor!”
Try it out!

2 small to medium eggplants
2 large or 6 small tomatoes
1 small long onion or large shallot
1garlic clove
3 tbsp Olive oil
Freshly ground sea salt
Enameled cast iron pot with cover
Preheat oven to 350F

Peel and chop the onion finely.

Place the olive oil in the bottom of an enameled cast iron pot. Place on the stove over medium heat.

Add the onions and turn the heat down to low to slowly melt them till translucent.

Chop the tomatoes in small cubes.

Add the tomatoes, a little salt and continue cooking slowly.

Cut the eggplants in small stripes and cubes.

Add the eggplant to the melted onion and tomatoes.

Peel and crush the garlic to chop it finely.

Add garlic to the cooking mixture, and a little more generous salt.

Add about 1/4 cup of water and cover the pot.

Place in the preheated oven and bake for about one hour.

Once the Bohemienne is cooked, spoon out immediately on plates accompanied by rice or potatoes if serving hot. This is also delicious cold.

Here, served with the beautiful farm greens and sautéed cubed potatoes. Enjoy!


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