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Favorites From Julia Child That Withstand the Test of Time

12 firm, medium-sized endives with tightly closed leaves
5 tablespoons butter
A 2 1/2- to 3-quart enameled casserole
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/4 cup water
A round of buttered parchment paper

Either:
2 tablespoons minced parsley
A hot vegetable dish

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Or:
A shallow baking dish
2 tablespoons melted butter
2 tablespoons minced parsley

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.

Trim the base of the endives. Discard any withered leaves. Wash one by one rapidly under running cold water. Drain.

Smear 1 1/2 tablespoons butter in the casserole. Lay the endives in it in two layers. Sprinkle each layer with salt and lemon juice and dot with butter. Pour in the water. Cover and boil slowly for 10 minutes. Uncover and boil rapidly for about 10 minutes or until liquid is reduced to 2 or 3 tablespoons.

Lay the paper over the endives, cover the casserole and bake in middle level of the preheated oven for 1 hour. Remove casserole cover but leave paper in place, and bake 30 minutes more or until endives are a nice golden yellow. Either arrange the endives in a hot vegetable dish or around your roast and sprinkle with parsley, or, for a more golden effect, arrange them in a baking dish, baste with melted butter, and brown briefly under the broiler. Sprinkle with parsley just before serving.

Per serving: 63 calories, 1 gm protein, 4 gm carbohydrates, 5 gm fat, 14 mg cholesterol, 3 gm saturated fat, 49 mg sodium, 3 gm dietary fiber

- - -

An old college beau's family was sophisticated, well traveled, well read. They had been to France many times. He had strong opinions about food and restaurants. I liked to cook but was far from adventurous. He intimidated me into trying snails and oysters on the half-shell. (I was a rapid convert.) When I was invited to visit their home, I was a bit awed. One night during my first stay, ratatouille was served. I had no idea what it was. I'm quite sure I had never before encountered a cooked eggplant. When I asked about how it was made, my boyfriend's mother showed me the recipe in Julia Child's book, which had been published a few years earlier. The next day she invited me into the kitchen and we made ratatouille. It took a couple of hours. The experience may seem a small moment, but it opened my eyes to life's many possibilities. -- Ronalie C. Peterson

Ratatouille (Eggplant Casserole With Tomatoes, Onions, Peppers and Zucchini)

Ratatouille perfumes the kitchen with the essence of Provence and is certainly one of the great Mediterranean dishes. As it is strongly flavored it is best when it accompanies plain roast or broiled beef or lamb, pot-au-feu (boiled beef), or plain roast, broiled or sauteed chicken. Equally good hot or cold, it also makes a fine accompaniment to cold meats, or may be served as a cold hors d'oeuvre.

A really good ratatouille is not one of the quicker dishes to make, as each element is cooked separately before it is arranged in the casserole to partake of a brief communal simmer. This recipe is the only one we know of that produces a ratatouille in which each vegetable retains its own shape and character. Happily a ratatouille may be cooked completely the day before it is to be served, and it seems to gain in flavor when reheated.

For 6 to 8 people

1/2 pound eggplant
1/2 pound zucchini
A 3-quart, porcelain or stainless-steel mixing bowl
1 teaspoon salt
A 10- to 12-inch enameled skillet
4 tablespoons olive oil, more if needed
1/2 pound (about 1 1/2 cups) thinly sliced yellow onions
2 (about 1 cup) sliced green bell peppers
2 to 3 tablespoons olive oil, if necessary
2 cloves mashed garlic
Salt and pepper to taste
1 pound firm, ripe, red tomatoes, peeled, seeded and juiced (makes 1 1/2 cups pulp)
Salt and pepper
A 2 1/2 quart fireproof casserole about 2 1/2 inches deep
3 tablespoons minced parsley
Salt and pepper


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