Recipe: Aubergine, Tomato and Parmesan Bake

Original recipe: http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/10033/aubergine-tomato-and-parmesan-bake-melanzane-alla-

Our first foray into aubergine-cooking! Even then, we’re not the most meticulous of cooks so we read the instructions and tweaked accordingly to cook quickly with minimal fuss.

Ingredients we used:

  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped finely
  • A sensible amount of oil for frying
  • 400g chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp of tomato puree
  • 2 aubergines, cut into long, thick slices
  • 80g grated Parmesan
  • A handful of basil leaves

Step 1: Heat oven to 200C/fan 180c/gas 6.

Step 2: Fry the garlic until brown and fragrant. Add in the chopped tomatoes. At this point, the oil is really hot so it will splatter. I removed the pot from the stove, poured the chopped tomatoes in, then returned the pot to the stove. Simmer for about 8 mins, then stir in the tomato puree and seasoning. We enjoy cooking together but we are not the most thorough chefs so we used cheap canned tomatoes and dried garlic and herbs.

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Step 3: Fry the aubergines until well browned and cooked through. Turn them halfway through cooking so they don’t burn. To ensure all the aubergines are cooked evenly and if your pan is not particularly large, you may need to repeat this process a few times.

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Step 4: When all the aubergines are cooked, lay a few of them in the bottom of an ovenproof dish then spoon over some sauce. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese and basil leaves. Add seasoning, then repeat this process with the remaining ingredients.

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Step 5: Sprinkle the rest of the Parmesan and basil leaves then bake for 20 mins.

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TADAAAA!!!!

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The aubergine turned out absolutely perfect and I went back for seconds despite feeling a little full. We had our aubergine with roast chicken and cous cous. My husband thinks it’s one of the best meals we’ve ever cooked together. That makes me really glad because I sometimes I fear I’m succumbing him to my bad cooking.

For best results, Parmesan and basil should be added between each layer. I forgot about this so we only added them on top. We used twice the amount of Parmesan as the original recipe suggested but it still wasn’t enough in my opinion. Next time, I would experiment with more (and stronger) cheese. I suspect that would cause the dish to turn out too salty, so perhaps we could add some milk?

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