The inspiration for this recipe is ratatouille Рthat classic Provencal m̩lange of sweetly caramelized summer vegetables like eggplant, tomatoes, and peppers that combine with herbs and garlic to make a sum greater than the parts.

While you can make ratatouille in a sauté pan, I like to make it from roasted vegetables, so in this recipe, I follow that technique but change up the flavor profile. Instead of just garlic, I add ginger and lime, too.  Instead of just basil, I use a combination of herbs like cilantro, mint, basil, and Thai Basil. This flavor profile is more Asian or Indian and very satisfying as an accompaniment to sear-roasted fish (like this Sear-Roasted Black Sea Bass with Ginger-Garlic-Lime Butter) or other seafood.

The first time I made this recipe, I included diced baby potatoes because I had some on hand from my CSA share. I liked the result, so I included them in the recipe.  As long as you dice the potatoes quite small, they will cook in the same amount of time it takes to get the eggplant and peppers soft and caramelized. But the nice thing is that they will retain a bit of texture, a bit of contrast to the silky eggplant. But if you prefer, leave the potatoes out and add the more traditional zucchini, or more of the other ingredients.  

Serves 3 as a side dish or 4 as a bed for seared fish

  • 5 tablespoons olive oil, more for pans
  • 7 to 8 ounces Fairy Tale or Asian eggplant, cut first into 3/4-inch slices and then quartered
  • 6 to 7 ounces cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 large or 2 medium bell peppers (any color), stem, ribs and seeds removed, cut into ¾-inch dice
  • 1 small red (or yellow) onion (about 4 to 5 ounces), cut into ¾-inch pieces
  • 6 ounces baby potatoes, cut into small dice, or zucchini, cut into ¾-inch pieces
  • Kosher Salt
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh garlic (more if you like)
  • ½ to 1 teaspoon fresh lime zest
  • 1 teaspoon chopped green coriander seeds (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons any combination thinly sliced (or baby leaves) basil, Thai basil, cilantro, and/or mint


1. Heat the oven to 400 degrees F. Rub two 9 x 13-inch baking dishes all over with a bit of olive oil.

2. Combine the eggplant, tomatoes, bell peppers, onions and potatoes (or zucchini) in a mixing bowl. Add the 5 tablespoons of olive oil and 1 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt. Toss well. Transfer the vegetables, scraping all of the oil and juices out of the bowl, into the two baking dishes, dividing evenly.

3. Roast the vegetables about 40 to 45 minutes, or until they are nicely softened and browned and juices have begun to caramelize in the pan.

4. Remove the pans from the oven and let sit for 10 minutes to cool slightly. Scrape the vegetables (they should still be a bit warm) into a bowl and fold in the chopped ginger (as much as you like), the chopped garlic, the lime zest, the green coriander (if using), and half of the herbs. Stir gently. The residual heat from the vegetables will soften the garlic and ginger. Let sit a few minutes and taste. Add more salt or garlic if desired.

5. Serve warm, garnished with the remaining herbs. Or, if making ahead, refrigerate and bring to room temperature (or slightly rewarm) before serving.