ratatouille de grandmere

August 27, 2012 § 8 Comments

I guess this is my first realtime post. Dinner is finishing in the oven, I’m sipping an Oregon pinot noir and remembering my longtime friend and culinary mentor Robert Reynolds. Like me, Robert conquered cancer. His victory lasted for three years before lymphoma returned in the form of a brain tumor earlier this year. One of my reasons to travel to Portland in June was to see him. He had just had surgery but some of the tumor remained. He contemplated a horrendous chemotherapy regimen for a brief time. Not surprisingly to me, he courageously chose quality of life over quantity. He shared his strength with me during my treatment last winter. I wasn’t sure what I could bring to the table, but now it was my turn.

Tonight in Colorado hubby Phil and I raise a toast to “Rowbear” (he liked to go by his French moniker Robeirt) over a light supper of some roasted tomato focaccia I had made this weekend and a zucchini dish from the cookbook he co-authored with his mentor, Josephine Araldo. I loved the cooking technique of lightly cooking each vegetable or leaving raw as it needed, then gentle baking in the oven (even though it’s still summery warmish here). This left each ingredient’s nature distinct, yet in harmony with the dish, a perfect example of the whole, being more than the sum of its parts. Au revoir, Robeirt, until we meet again.

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§ 8 Responses to ratatouille de grandmere

  • Mary Hirsch says:

    Marilyn, My condolences to you for losing Robert. It is difficult and sad to close the door on a friend as well as a mentor, I know. Thank you for sharing this recipe and his cookbook with us. And, we can only appreciate knowing that you have wonderful memories of this man, Robert.

  • moiscooking says:

    I didn’t know Robert but I heard you and Tagg speak of him enough to feel love and respect for him. I am sure the world will be a less interesting and passionate place without him but I am sure he will live on in many hearts and inspire many dishes.

  • mireia says:

    I really need to try making ratatouille some day!!

    • Piebird says:

      Hi Mireia,
      this isn’t your normal Mediterranean ratatouille, it doesn’t even have any eggplant. but I loved the cooking technique of lightly cooking each vegetable or leaving raw as it needed, then gentle baking in the oven (even though it’s still summery warmish here). it left each ingredient’s nature distinct, yet in harmony with the dish. a perfect example of the whole, being more than the sum of its parts. I will post my version of the dish soon.

  • He left a lot of himself behind, as is evident in this post. I´m glad you´re sharing him and his book with us. Food will always bring people together. I like the title in this recipe since it was my grandmother who taught me how to make ratatouille. Nice post Marilyn!

  • Teresa says:

    Cooking one of his recipes was a wonderful way to pay tribute to your friend and mentor. Beautiful post.

  • What a very touching post and wonderful tribute to your friend and culinary mentor Robert Reynolds! I love the fact that you prepared a wonderful baked mediterranean vegetable dish from the “From a Breton Garden” cookbook that he co-authored – the cookbook sounds like a book that I would enjoy very much, thanks for mentioning it.

  • bevwinchester says:

    A beautiful blog you have & what a poignant post about your dear friend. I greatly admire your zeal to catch up on FFWD recipes- I have so many of them I want to make & fall short. May your dear friend Robert be at peace in rest.

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