Baked Aubergines

Aubergines done like this go extremely well with lamb, or they’re good on their own as a lunchtime dish with lots of fresh bread and perhaps a green salad.

Serves 4

This recipe first appeared in Delia's Frugal Food.

Baked Aubergines
 4 aubergines (about 800g)
 4 tablespoons oil
 1 large onion, peeled and finely chopped
 6 fairly large tomatoes, skinned and chopped
 2 cloves garlic, crushed
 2 tablespoons finely chopped parsley
 A very generous pinch each of ground allspice, powdered cinnamon and caster sugar
For the topping:
 2-3 tablespoons dry white breadcrumbs
 1 tablespoon grated Parmesan or other cheese
 1 tablespoon butter


First cut the aubergines into smallish pieces, then place them in a colander and sprinkle with 2 heaped teaspoons of salt. Put a plate on top of them with a weight on it and leave them to drain for an hour.

Then, when you’re ready to cook them, preheat the oven to 190˚C/345˚F/gas mark 5 and butter a shallow baking dish.

Drain and dry the aubergines as thoroughly as possible on kitchen paper, then heat the oil in a frying pan. When it’s hot, add the aubergines and fry until they’re a pale golden colour.

Now add the onion to the pan and continue cooking until it has softened slightly; then add the tomatoes, crushed garlic and parsley, together with the spices, sugar and seasoning.

Simmer gently now, stirring a bit, for about 5 minutes. Next transfer the mixture to the baking dish, sprinkle the top with a mixture of cheese and breadcrumbs, and dot the surface with the butter.

Then bake on a high shelf in the oven for about 30 minutes, or until bubbling and browned on top.

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