Voluptuous Aubergine Parmigiana

I have loads of cookbooks, some barely opened. Stuart likes to complain about how many I have and how they just seem to sit looking pretty on the shelf.  So, to prove to him that all the cookbooks are great and essential, I have set myself a challenge to cook at least one dish from a cookbook on the shelf each week.

So, this weeks book is Sophie Dahl’s Voluptuous Delights. Now, the TV program that went with this book seriously annoyed me – it was so sickly twee.  However,  I was strangely addicted and ended up buying the book. This is actually its first outing, and I choose the Aubergine Parmigiana.

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Reasonably straight forward, not very much effort, and in fact not particularly healthy given the amount of cheese you put in it – but definitely tasty!

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Aubergine Parmigiana (servers 4-6)

Ingredients

3 Medium Sized Aubergines
Sea Salt
125ml Olive Oil
1 Large Onion, sliced
2 cloves of Garlic, peeled and finely chopped
3 x 400g Cans of chopped Tomatoes
1 tbsp. Soft Brown Sugar
Salt and Pepper
Thick Balsamic Vinegar (optional)
50g Fresh Basil, chopped
300g Buffalo Mozzarella
100g Grated Parmesan

Method

  • Preheat the oven to 200C/180C Fan/Gas 6
  • Slice the aubergine lengthways into 1cm thick slices
  • Lay them on them on a flat surface and sprinkle them generously with sea salt.  Leave for 20 mins
  • In a large saucepan heat some of the olive oil, and gently sweat the onions and garlic
  • Add the tomatoes and brown sugar.  Simmer for about 20 mins. [You can add the balsamic vinegar at this point if you wish – I did]
  • Put the aubergine slices on a baking tray in a single layer.  Brush with Olive oil and bake for about 15 mins, until they start to turn golden
  • Grease a largish baking dish with some olive oil
  • Remove the aubergines from the oven and arrange a layer of them in the dish
  • Sprinkle some basil, add some mozzarella slices, some of the tomato sauce and then add some Parmesan.
  • Keep layering like this until everything is used up
  • Top with more Parmesan and basil, then bake for 20mins

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I served this with a nice salad of lettuce, cherry tomatoes and red onion dressed with a little lemon juice and olive oil.

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