A neat little Ratatouille twist

Everyone loves ratatouille, right? I usually make mine by just stewing all the ingredients in a pot. Garlic, tomatoes, eggplant, zucchini, peppers, herbs and pepper powder – YUM!

Yesterday, I threw in a teeny dash of prepared French-style mustard into the pot after it was done cooking, and let it sit for a few minutes before eating. It was a really interesting and tasty twist on my usual dish and one I’m sure I’ll try again.

french mustard


Vegetable Stew Chinese-style

This is a wholesome Chinese-inspired stew that my mum made quite often for me. It was also one of the first few dishes I learned to cook – and one I’ve eaten lots of over the years!

vegetable stew chinese-style

In the picture here, I’ve used carrots, green peas, red cabbage, cooked chickpeas and cooked red rice – but you can use any vegetables you like. Some of my favourites are sweet or baby corn, mushrooms, broccoli or cauliflower, and green cabbage. You can use tofu or other peas/ beans in place of the chickpeas, and another kind of rice or grain instead of red rice. This stew works well with noodles too. Just make sure to adjust the quantity of the seasonings accordingly.

You need:

  • Onion – 1 large, sliced
  • Garlic, minced – 1 tsp
  • Ginger, minced – 1 tsp
  • Carrots, chopped small – 50 gms
  • Green peas – 50 gms
  • Red cabbage, chopped – 2 tbsp
  • Chickpeas, cooked – 3 tbsp
  • Red rice, cooked – 5 tbsp
  • Black pepper powder – 1/4 tsp
  • Salt – to taste
  • Cornflour – 1 to 2 tsp, depending on how thick you want your stew
  • Soy sauce – 1 tsp (optional)

Heat a wok or stewpot and cook onions in it for a couple minutes. Add ginger and garlic, and cook until onions are translucent. Throw in a splash of water and the longer-cooking ingredients – carrots, mushrooms, tofu if using etc. After a couple minutes headstart, add everything else except the cornflour. Mix well and bring to a gentle simmer. Cover and cook for 2 to 3 minutes.

Dissolve cornflour in a a few spoonfuls of water and stir in to stew. Let bubble till stew turns from milky to translucent. Turn off heat.

Let the stew sit for a few minutes before eating.