My friend introduced me to this recipe that combines two of my favorite hearty comfort foods which quickly became a staple recipe in my kitchen. The following recipe for Ratatouille Sloppy Joe blends the flavor, color and nutrition of ratatouille, a traditional French vegetable stew, into an all-American favorite-Sloppy Joes. A French flair and an optional call for ground bison help add a sophistication to this typically messy sandwich. This meal is delicious and satisfying served on its own, but I’ve come up with alternative ways of serving the leftovers so I can continue to make this as often as I want without making the same meal twice. I love using the leftovers as a delicious meaty/sauce layer on homemade pizzas, in a lasagna, served over a plate of pasta, in a sandwich or as a base for a thick stew, or, simply freezing the leftovers for when I need them.
1 tsp EVOO
1 lb extra-lean bison or turkey.
3 gloves garlic
1 onion, diced
2 tsp chile powder
3/4 tsp mustard powder (I used dijon mustard from my fridge)
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper (adjust according to personal spice preference)
1 bell pepper- red or green
1 zucchini, diced
1, 1/2 marinara sauce
1 tbsp honey or agave syrup
sea salt and fresh ground black pepper, to taste
8 sandwich buns or homemade biscuits* ( I prefer to serve this dish with my own freshly made biscuits, recipe available here.)
- Heat a large nonstick pan over medium-high heat. Add oil, meat, garlic and onion and cook for 5 – 8 minutes, breaking up meat with a spoon while cooking, until no liquid remains and the meat is browned. Add chile powder, mustard, and cayenne, stir well and continue to cook for 1 more minute. Pour the mixture into a bowl and set aside.
-Return pan to heat and add bell pepper, zucchini and eggplant, stir and saute for 3 – 4 minutes. Add meat mixture back to pan, stir well and reduce heat to medium. Cook for an additional 10- 12 minutes, stirring often, or until all vegetables are tender and cooked throughout.
-Add the marinara sauce, 2 tbsp water and honey to the pan, stirring until meat and vegetables are coated. Cook until sauce is hot and bubbling. Season with salt and pepper & enjoy!