April 12, 2015

Cheesy Baked Melitszana...

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This dish is really fantastic, a Mediterranean classic, easy and a great veggie option to have amongst your meat heavy summer BQQ dishes. 

It's also perfect comfort food and bursting with flavour. 

For one healthy (ish) plate of cheesy baked melitszana you will need...

3 large aubergines sliced, you can do this with with a knife, or if you want wafer thin slices for more layers you could use a mandolin... But do so with caution! 

1 tin of tomatoes 
A few sprigs of Fresh thyme
Dried oregano 
A good shake of salt and pepper 
1 cup of kefalotyri chesse if you want to keep the dish greek (cheddar will also work well) 
2 tsp cinnamon 

Use a microplane grater for your chesse as you get light shavings which go a long way so the dish doesn't become too heavy. 

Start by lightly frying your aubergines for a few minutes until golden. 

I use a griddle as it gives your veg (and meat or bread) nice rustic stripes also the hot plate is quite large so you can normally do them all in one batch.

Once cooked leave them to cool off while you get on with your tomato sauce. 

Put your tin of tomatoes in a pan and add your herbs and salt and pepper and some cinnamon. Stir together and let simmer for a few minutes untill reduced slightly.

Get to work grating your cheese and set to once side. Now you are ready to assemble...

Layer your aubergines, sauce and cheese, repeat untill you run out of aubergines but still have sauce and cheese for the important crispy topping!

Finish with the rest of the sauce and a good finally layer of cheese, you want the top to be really golden. 

Now bake in the over for 30-40 minutes untill the cheese is golden and gooey and smelling delicious. 

Set to one side and serve with some crisp salad and meat fresh from the grill or BBQ.
Or just tuck in to the dish on its with some red wine... 

A really easy, tasty show stopper, perfect for these warmer days.

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