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HomeDesignA Recipe For Summer

A Recipe For Summer

It’s the high summer season. I love summer. I love everything about it: long days of nuturing my gardening and mowing the lawn, eating al fresco, swimming in the sun, walks with Siri, wearing flip flops. But, especially, I love my summer produce! I went shopping at None Such Farm and at the Stockton Farmers Market last week and came home with so many locally grown fruits and vegetables. Mmmmmm…

So, l was home last night with fresh picked zucchini, onions, garlic, tomatoes and a beautiful eggplant. I had some nice kalamata olives and, of course, some French feta (my fave…I always have some in my fridge). I decided to create something for dinner…I realized I had all of the ingredients of a classic ratatouille, but I wanted to make something to have with pasta. Here’s what I came up with.

Rigattoni with “Deconstructed” Grilled Ratatouille

First, as the base for the dish, I decided to make a fresh raw tomato sauce. So I diced up 3 large plum tomatoes and put them in a big bowl. To that I added 2 garlic cloves, finely sliced, salt, pepper and a big glug of a fruity extra virgin olive oil. I let that sit while I went on to the other veggies.

The raw tomato sauce is great on it’s own with any pasta. Just a grating of Parmigiano Reggiano and your good to go.


The pepper and onion seasoned and ready for the grill pan.


I cut the onion, 2 zucchini and the eggplant into rounds and cut up a bell pepper. I laid them out on sheet pans, seasoned them with salt and pepper and gave them a drizzle of olive oil. I grilled them on a grill pan on the stove and set them aside.

The zucchini getting good grill marks.


That’s a lot of grilled vegies!


I brought a large pot of salted water to a boil, while I coarsely chopped about 1/2 cup kalamata olives and set that aside. I grated some Parmigiano Reggiano, minced some fresh parsley and basil (about 1/2 cup’s worth) and cut about 8 oz. of French feta into 1/2″ chunks. Then I cut up the onion, pepper, zucchini and eggplant into large dice.



The vegies ready for the final assembly. 


When I added the hot rigatoni the scent from the garlic and tomatoes was so heavenly.


I find that French feta is creamier. I love incorporating it into pasta dishes.


When the pasta was done al-dente I drained it and added it to the bowl with the tomatoes and garlic. I tossed it while the pasta was hot. Oh, the scent! Then I added all the diced vegies and herbs and tossed that. Looking and smelling good so far! I added some parmesan and combined it all. Lastly, I incorporated the feta and gave it a taste and adjusted the seasonings, adding a bit of olive oil. It was all so yummy!


It was totally delish! And see how beautiful it looks?


I had so much grilled vegies that I used the remnants to make an impromptu caponata. It made for a great breakfast the next morning on some toasted French bread and avocado.


I hope you get a chance to make many wonderful summer dishes for you and your friends and family. Enjoy the lazy days of summer. Until Next time. Ciao!