Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Movie Food: Spanglish and Ratatouille

OK, I love movies. 
I'm Emily, and I'm a movie-holic. 
So, I thought I'd share two of my favorite movie recipes, both from Chef Thomas Keller of the French Laundry. 
The first, from Spanglish, is what Adam Sandler (a chef, in the film) makes when he gets home from work. A video how-to is also included on the DVD, if you happen to own it (which you should, because it's a great movie.) 

Spanglish: The World's Greatest Sandwich

4 thick slices of bacon
2 slices of Monterey Jack cheese
2 thick slices of rustic white bread, toasted and hot
1 tablespoon mayonnaise
4 tomato slices
2 leaves of butter lettuce
1 teaspoon unsalted butter
1 large egg

  1. In a skillet, cook the bacon over moderate heat, turning, until crisp, about 8 minutes. Transfer to paper towels to drain.
  2. Set the Monterey Jack slices on 1 piece of toast. Spread the mayonnaise on the other slice of toast, then top with the bacon, tomato and lettuce.
  3. In a small, nonstick skillet, melt the butter. Add the egg and fry over moderate heat, turning once, until crisp around the edge, about 4 minutes; the yolk should still be runny.
  4. Slide the egg onto the lettuce; close the sandwich and eat right away.
Makes 1 sandwich.

Ratatouille: Ratatouille (what else?) 

Thomas Keller's Ratatouille
1/2 red pepper, seeds and ribs removed
1/2 yellow pepper, seeds and ribs removed
1/2 orange pepper, seeds and ribs removed
5 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic
1/2 cup finely diced yellow onion
3 tomatoes (about 12 ounces), peeled, seeded and finely diced, juices reserved
1 sprig fresh thyme
1 sprig flat-leaf parsley
Half a bay leaf
1 zucchini (4 to 5 ounces) sliced in 1/16-inch rounds
1 Japanese eggplant (4 to 5 ounces) sliced into 1/16-inch rounds
1 yellow squash (4 to 5 ounces) sliced into 1/16-inch rounds
4 Roma tomatoes, sliced into 1/16-inch rounds
1/8 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Heat the oven to 450 degrees. Place the peppers cut side down on a foil-lined sheet. Roast until skin loosens, about 15 minutes. Remove from heat and let rest until cool enough to handle. Peel and chop finely.
Combine 2 tablespoons of olive oil, 1 teaspoon of the garlic, and onion in medium skillet over low heat until very soft but not browned, about 8 minutes. Add the tomatoes, their juices, fresh thyme, parsley and bay leaf. Simmer over low heat until very soft and very little liquid remains, about 10 minutes. Do not brown. Add peppers and simmer to soften them. Season to taste with salt, and discard herbs.

Reserve one tablespoon of the mixture and spread remainder in bottom of an 8-inch skillet nice enough to serve from, or a small, shallow casserole dish. Reduce the heat in the oven to 275 degrees.
Down center of the skillet or casserole dish, arrange a strip of alternating slices of zucchini, eggplant, yellow squash and Roma tomatoes, overlapping so that 1/4 inch of each slice is exposed. Around the center strip, overlap the vegetables in a close spiral that lets slices mound slightly toward center. Repeat until pan is filled.
Mix 1/2 teaspoon of the minced garlic, 2 tablespoons of olive oil in bowl and season with salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle over the vegetables.
Cover pan with foil and seal well. Bake until vegetables are tender, about 2 hours. Uncover and bake for 30 minutes more.
For the final topping combine the reserved tablespoon of sauce with the remaining 1 tablespoon oil, the vinegar, and salt and pepper to taste in a bowl. Drizzle around plate. Serve hot. Serves 4 to 6.
Source: Tribune Media Services

Now, I fully admit that the sandwich is easier. :) In fact, I'm going to make that first. I've been waning to make it for a long time.  The ratatouille? That might not happen until I own a mandolin. 

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