Baked aubergine and mozarella| Weekend edition link loves


aubergine casserole-2

Everyone of us has his or her definition of comfort food. Food that brings back the much needed soul on mundane days, food that reminds us of childhood, food that connects with people we love. My kind of comfort food has always been Malaysian food, as that’s what I grew up with, but then I realised much later that what we had at home are not really authentic Malaysian food, yet a hodge-podge of cuisines which reflected us as a family, and food that we had through our journeys and travels. How Middle Eastern, Indian and Italian cuisines are amalgated in either macaroni with chicken soup, a simple chapati roll with sambal, or in this case, baked aubergine with italian style tomato sauce layered with arabic spices, to be enjoyed with a bowl of Jasmine rice!

aubergine picture

That’s the beauty of food. It does not discriminate. It does not define one by passport, nationality or race. How the warmth of a baked casserole brings family together, through lunches or suppers. Irrespective of whether it’s called brinjal, aubergine or eggplant, it will still be delicious! I took to chopping the aubergine into neat little circles, and since I always have stocks of homemade tomato Ragu in the fridge, this dish took minimal time to prepare.

aubergine layers

aubergine casserole

The layered casserole reminds me so much of Greek Moussaka, only this one does not have any potatoes or legumes. Just aubergine, tomato sauce, and cheese, enriched with sumac, oregano and a dash of paprika for good measure. I am assuming that something homemade like this will be ideal for feeding the family over the weekend, or even baked in smaller portion as a bachelor meal.

aubergine casserole final fg-2

 

Baked aubergine and mozarella| Weekend edition link loves

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 45 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour

Yield: 1 large casserole

Serving Size: 4-6

Middle eastern and italian flavours complement each other in this layered baked aubergine with mozarella, sumac and homemade tomato sauce.

Ingredients

  • 2 medium sized aubergine
  • 1 cup Tomato Ragu ( recipe [here|http://www.thecookingdoctor.co.uk/2013/06/of-ragu-and-pizza-sauces.html)
  • 1 cup grated mozarella
  • 1 tbsp sumac
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp italian seasoning or oregano

Instructions

  1. Slice the aubergine into thin circles.
  2. Preheat the oven to 190C.
  3. Layer the aubergine circles ( as 1 layer ) on the bottom of big casserole.
  4. Divide the tomato ragu into 3 portion, and spread 1/3 cup on top of aubergine.
  5. Mix all the spices ( sumac, black pepper, salt and oregano) and sprinkle on top of tomato sauce.
  6. If the tomato sauce is already salted, omit the salt.
  7. Sprinkle half of the cheese and repeat layer with aubergine, then tomato sauce, spices and cheese again.
  8. Ensure the top is top layer ends with cheese.
  9. Sprinkle the spices and bake for 30-45 mins until golden.
  10. Serve warm with bread, rice, potatoes or as main course.

Notes

Feel free to use store bought tomato ragu. Sumac is tangy arabic spice used frequently in kebabs/ shawarma or meat based dishes. Omit if you don't have, it will not affect the casserole much but the flavours are outstanding with it.

aubergine casserole

Let’s see what others are cooking, and for inspiration this weekend:

  • I would love to make this pear and hazelnut muffin from Smitten Kitchen, which is inspired by the Whole Grain breakfast cookbook.
  • Speaking of which, that’s the book that I need to grab asap, I have read a lot of raved reviews about it, she is after all the founder of the nicely packaged homemade granola.
  • I only discovered this blog recently, and catching up with all the archive posts and gorgeous photography. ┬áThe recent orange, avocado and feta salad should inspire you in this citrus season.
  • This video really brought a smile on me; Hubs first ever gift to me was a set of cookie press ( ha!) that too all the way from Medina. Talk about fate. And my love for cookie press.
  • I know this is not food related, but it’s totally related to my weekend. Plenty of sewing ideas for the little one and the house.
  • Tomorrow I am making this for breakfast. Weekend is all about brunch and sleeping in.
  • For easy pantry ideas and plenty to laugh about, read this.

Update!

Half of my weekend is already gone with a long trip to Ikea, and we enjoyed too many chicken wings in their food court! Any great recipe on non-fried chicken wings is greatly welcomed, in the comment below ;-)..I guess that’s our indulgence this weekend.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Comments

  1. says

    this is an interesting one pot meal… with loads of cheese on top!!! yum yum… i love ikea, especially for the loads of “little” things they keep tempting me to splurge! :D

  2. says

    I agree that comfort food brings you back to your roots and gives you a hug deep inside. I know whenever I feel homesick I can cook some memory food and I’m fine again. Jehanne, this casserole would be perfect on my table!

    • Jehanne says

      Thanks a lot Maureen, try it, you will love it. You have hundred years, I was just telling my mom about your corn patch and I saw this comment! :D

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