A simple dish to make which rewards the maker with a delicious melange of flavours.
A simple delish dish to make using a favourite veg of mine - eggplant
- 1 kg Eggplant Either long ones or fat stubby ones it doesn't really matter
- Olive oil
- 250 g Pasta sauce or sugo
- 250 g Tomatoes Cherry tomatoes or just plain old tomatoes will do
- Pepper Native pepper berries work well but ordinary black pepper is fine
- 1 handful Basil
- 1/2 ball Mozzarella
- 100 g Parmesan
- Set your oven to warm at 200C.
- Using your kitchen knife slice the eggplants in about 1cm slices. I like mine sliced across the width, but others ask for slices along the length if you are using long fruit.
- Line the baking tray with baking paper. You can do without, but your slices will stick to the baking tray and be a tad difficult to get off the pan whole.
- Lay the slices of eggplant on the baking tray and drizzle oil over them. If you are just using a baking tray oil the surface of the tray before putting the eggplant slices on it.
- Pop eggplant into the oven. They will take between 45 mins to 1 hour to soften and brown. Check at 30 minutes just in case.
- Meanwhile, pour 250 g of the pasta sauce/sugo into the saucepan. Heat till a good simmer.
- Add either the cherry tomatoes or diced ordinary tomatoes.
- Meanwhile, grate the parmesan and mozzarella.
- As the cherry or ordinary tomatoes cook, they should begin collapsing. You can help this along with a potato masher.
- Add a pinch of salt and of pepper also to the sauce.
- Keep simmering the sauce till it is quite thick.
- Check on your eggplant and when they are soft and brown they are ready to use.
- Line the casserole dish with olive oil.
- Put in a single layer of the eggplant to cover the base of the casserole dish.
- Spoon over a third of the pasta sauce. Make sure all of the eggplant is covered - you may have to spread it thin - that's alright.
- Place a third of the basil leaves on top of the sauced eggplant.
- Sprinkle a third of each of the cheeses on top of the sauce right to the edge of the casserole dish.
- Do all of this with the eggplant, sauce, cheese and basil leaves again.
- Do all this a third time finishing with the cheeses on the top of the dish.
- Put the parmigiana into the oven. It will take between 1/2 and 3/4 of an hour for the parmigiana to cook - you want the cheese brown and melted and there will be some sauce bubbling up the sides of the casserole dish also. Check after 30 mins just in case.
- When it's ready put more basil leaves on top of the dish.