Attention to detail and timing in this dish is key. The vegetables in this seasonal ratatouille are cooked separately to preserve their individual textures and then cooled completely. When ready to serve, the ratatouille is then reheated just as the branzino begins to cook.
Recipe courtesy of Bagatelle NYC Executive Chef Nicolas Frezal.
Blanch basil in hot water for 20 second then transfer directly to ice water. Repeat with lemon zest.
Place olive oil and basil in a blender and blend until smooth.
Add salt and pepper, lemon zest, and blend. Taste again, adjusting seasoning as necessary.
Cook all vegetables separately with olive oil, garlic, salt, pepper, and thyme. The pan needs to be very hot, and be sure to cook the vegetables just until al dente (no more) or else it will beome mushy. After cooking, put in the fridge to cool down. When everything is cold you can mix all the vegetables together with the lemon juice. Cooking all vegetables separately is better to keep the flavor and texture of the vegetables.
When ready to serve, warm up the ratatouille in a pan.
Cook the branzino filet a la plancha or in a pan with little bit of olive oil and salt and pepper for 2 minutes skin side first, then flip over and cook for 30 seconds. Plate the ratatouille, top with branzino and drizzle with basil sauce.
Garnish with micro basil as desired.