The combination here is only one of many, though I never use more than seven to nine vegetables, and I never use tomatoes unless they are cherry tomatoes, because they water down the sauce and dominate the flavors. The addition of chopped garlic and herbs just before you bring the stew to the table causes a burst of rich fragrance that perfects the dish.
I prefer water to chicken stock for a cooking liquid—the resulting sauce has a much fresher and purer vegetable taste—and I use either butter or olive oil to finish the dish. If the word ragout comes from the French ragouter, meaning “to revive the appetite,” then this is the dish to do it.
In this version, which I cooked with
Dust the surface of the goat cheese with freshly ground black pepper. Then dip the cheese in the
Put the onions, bell peppers, thyme, tarragon,
Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil; maintain it at a steady boil while adding the succession of vegetables. Cook the carrots in the boiling water for 1 minute, then lift them out and add to the onions in the sauté pan. Cook the zucchini in the boiling water for 1 minute, then add to the other vegetables. Cook the French beans, fava beans, and asparagus together in the boiling water for 1 minute and add to the other vegetables.
Toss, cover, and cook the vegetables for 2 minutes. Make sure there is about
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