Ratatouille is a strange dish, possibly the embodiment of the Mediterranean diet. It's made from summer vegetables like aubergines (eggplant), courgettes (zucchini), red bell peppers and tomatoes with lots of olive oil. You might think it's a generations-old traditional peasant dish, but in fact it isn't. It only began appearing in the 1930s, and there is no one definitive recipe for it. It was very popular in the UK in the 1970s and '80s with the amazing discovery that not all vegetables grew underground or were brassicas. Most ratatouille that I've had previously has been not much more than a tomatoey mush, but in this recipe the vegetables are more clearly defined (thanks largely to the Thomas Keller inspired dish in the movie of the same name). It's quite easy to make, and vegetarians love it. Me? I think a bit of bacon wouldn't go amiss, but then I always think that.