- 4 medium sized eggplants
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 2 large onions (red or brown), peeled and thinly sliced
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- 400 g can chopped tomatoes
- 2 tbsp coarsely chopped flat-leaf parsley
- 1/4 tsp each of salt & ground black pepper
- 1/2 tsp brown sugar
- 1 juice of 1 lemon
- 1/2 cup grated parmesan
• Preheat the oven to 180°C. Trim any stalks off the eggplants, then, using a small knife or potato peeler, peel off strips of the skin lengthways, leaving alternate strips of skin and exposed flesh.
Sprinkle with salt and set aside. Heat 1/4 cup of the oil in a pan and fry each of the eggplants, turning so they brown on all sides. Remove from the pan and set aside.
• Heat the remaining 1/4 cup of the olive oil in the pan, to a medium
heat. Add the sliced onions and cook gently for 10 minutes until soft
and translucent. Add the garlic, cook for a further 2 minutes, then add tomatoes, parsley, salt and pepper. Simmer, uncovered, until it
reduces and deepens in colour – about 10 minutes.
• Pack the eggplants into an oven proof dish so they fit snugly. Cut
a slit in each eggplant, (not all the way through though) and spoon
some of the onion and tomato sauce inside each cavity. Spoon the remaining tomato mixture on top.
• Mix the sugar, lemon juice and water and pour this around the
eggplants until it almost covers them. Cover the dish with a lid or
double layer of foil and bake for 45 minutes or until the eggplants are tender, even collapsing.
• Remove the lid or foil, add grated parmesan and bake for 10-15
minutes more until the juices are reduced and syrupy and the top is golden.
• Serve warm or at room temperature, either as a side to roast meat,
or as a vegetarian main dish on its own.