Quince and pumpkin ratatouille

Quince and pumpkin ratatouille.
Quince and pumpkin ratatouille. Photo: Marina Oliphant

This a good example of the sweet and sour flavours of Moorish cooking. Serve it with game or lamb, or enjoy on its own.


5 quince

500g Jap pumpkin, peeled and cut into 2.5cm dice

Sea salt flakes

150ml olive oil

3 large eggplants, cut into 1cm dice

110ml extra virgin olive oil

1 large brown onion, diced

2 green capsicum, seeded and diced

5 bay leaves

1 tbsp cumin seeds, roasted and ground

1kg tomatoes, peeled, seeded and pureed

100g green olives, pitted and halved


Preheat oven to 180 degrees. Wash and wipe quince and place on a large baking tray. Roast one hour or until soft and pink.

Place pumpkin on another baking tray, sprinkle with one teaspoon sea salt and drizzle with 60ml olive oil. Shake tray to coat pumpkin with oil and bake 20-30 minutes or until tender.

Heat remaining 90 millilitres of olive oil in a large heavy-based frying pan on high heat until just smoking. Add eggplant, season to taste and toss for seven to eight minutes or until golden and tender. Drain on paper towel.

Heat 50 millilitres extra virgin olive oil in a large heavy-based saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onion and a pinch of salt and cook for five minutes until soft but not coloured.

Stir in capsicum, bay leaves and cumin, reduce heat to medium low, cover and cook for 20 minutes or until soft and jam-like. Meanwhile, peel and quarter quince and cut into 2.5-centimetre dice.

Add pureed tomatoes to onion and capsicum and cook for two to three minutes or until warm. Add pumpkin, quince, eggplant and olives and gently stir together.

Season, serve warm.