Aysha Mahmood, is a 20 year old student studying media and marketing at Keele University. Aysha has been taking part in work experience here with BabaBaboon and explored the world of food which took her around the world.

Here Aysha shares her own food recipes and ideas – exclusively – for BabaBaboon’s readers…

Aysha says: “My work experience has has helped me enjoy creative writing again, a hobby that really opened up my imagination when I was a child so I hope as you read and create these dishes for yourself you can experience the wonders of the ratatouille, cheesy naan bread, poulet au coco and aloo chaat….”

Aysha’s first Blog is all about Ratatouille…

“As the year 2020 come and went, we can all say it has been a time of self-reflection and growth…it led onto 2021 and a time to perhaps develop some new skills, cooking maybe?

As we can now make up for the loss of travelling by cooking up simple yet flavourful dishes from different cultures. Everyone has heard of the film Ratatouille but how about making France’s iconic dish?

It can and will be done by using this easy to follow recipe that will truly make everyone’s mouth water…

“This dish originated in the south of France around Provence and Nice but this specific recipe was passed down through generations from my childhood friend – Laetitia’s Bonnard’s great-great grandmother – to Laetitia herself. When I first tasted this recipe I was six at Laetitia’s house and ever since I fell in love with it… Each bite reminds me of summer as the different vegetables and herbs combined create a lively fresh flavour alongside the aroma of the herbs de Provence which is a combination of thyme, basil, rosemary, tarragon, savory, marjoram and oregano which can be used as a substitute if you are unable to find herbs de provence in your local supermarket. 

“I usually eat this dish with fusilli pasta, as opposed to the penne pasta, as the sauce of the stew intertwines with the twists of the fusilli pasta to give maximum flavour of the ratatouille but with imagination, there are endless ways to serve ratatouille as it can be used as a main with a side of rice, bread, quinoa or even red wine but ratatouille can also be a side dish to various of different meats such as chicken, lamb, steak or fish.

“This method of cooking requires few steps and ingredients, but it is time-consuming so be sure to prepare for the wait whilst it cooks by making a cuppa or by watching an episode or two of your favourite show to keep your mind off the delectable ratatouille that awaits…”

(Main image by Aysha)

Aysha shares her friend’s recipe below: 


Cooking time: 3hrs

Serves: up to 6 people


10 to 15 tbsp olive oil 

2 courgettes 

1 aubergine 

1 red pepper 

1 green pepper

1 full can of tomato chunks 

1 whole yellow onion 

3 garlic cloves 

2 tbsp of herbs de Provence

Salt (to taste)

Pepper (to taste) 



Step 1: 

Chop the courgettes, aubergine, the red pepper, the green pepper into bite-size chunks.

Step 2: 

Dice the onion into smaller chunks.

Step 3: 

Cook the courgettes, aubergine, the red pepper, the green pepper and onion separately in a saute pan until they are all soft and cooked adding 2 to 3 tbsp of olive oil to the pan each time you cook each vegetable. 

Step 4: 

Once you have cooked all the vegetables separately you can put them all together in a soup pot.

Step 5:

It is time to add the can of tomato chunks, the 2 tbsp of herbs with the salt and pepper to taste.

Step 6: 

Peel and mince the 3 garlic cloves and add it to the pot. 

Step 7: 

Leave the ratatouille to cook on low heat for 1 hour and 30 minutes. 

Step 8: 

And voila! Your ratatouille is cooked.

Eat this as a pasta dish or with rice on the side, make it your own!

Aysha will be back soon with another “tasty” food blog for BabaBaboon…


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