Ratatouille: Everybody can cook

Jan 11, 2010 by

Anybody can cook, right? That’s the main message of the animated kids’ movie Ratatouille, out last year, and which I finally watched. That message seemed pretty sound to me at first glance.

But what the film actually means by “anybody can cook” gave me plenty of food for thought. I wish I could rewrite the film to convey instead, “everybody can cook.”

The story tells of Remy, a rat of humble origins, who becomes more than human through a superhuman genius for cooking.

Remy gets his inspiration to rise above the garbage-eating gluttony of his rat culture through exposure to humans, in particular their cookbooks, TV cooking shows, higher quality foodstuffs and discriminating tastes.

Without condemning or rejecting his rat family and friends, Remy the rat…

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Ratatouille for Picky Kids

Apr 18, 2009 by

Ratatouille In France, ratatouille is one of those standard dishes that just about everybody is familiar with and has had at home some time or other.  Its equivalent in America might be meatloaf or macaroni and cheese, or hamburgers.

As with meatloaf, there are endless variations and preferred ways to fix this Mediterranean- style summer vegetable stew. The foundational ingredients of a ratatouille are eggplants, zucchini and tomatoes.

It’s great served with plain couscous (a coarsely ground semolina pasta, a staple of North African cooking, which is ready to eat in minutes. Kids love it), or plain meat or fish.

The best ratatouille I’ve ever tried…

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