Serves 2 as a main meal or 4 as a side vegetable
2 aubergines, flesh removed from skin and diced
1 red pepper. Deseeded & diced
8 chestnut mushrooms. diced
1 medium onion or shallot, finely diced
1-2 cloves of garlic, pressed
Handful fresh oregano or sweet marjoram leaves, roughly chopped
Handful fresh parsley, finely chopped
Salt & pepper
For the tahini dressing
1 tbsp Tahini
1 tbsp Lemon juice
1 tbsp Water
pinch salt and generous grind of pepper
pinch cayenne pepper
Halve the aubergines, score the flesh in a criss-cross pattern and scoop out the flesh leaving the skins intact and cubes of aubergine flesh.
Place the skins in a baking tray, drizzle with olive oil, season and bake in a preheated oven at 180°c for approx. 15 mins until skins have softened
Meanwhile deseed and dice the pepper, dice the mushrooms, finely dice the shallot, peel and press the garlic
Heat some olive oil in a pan and gently sauté the aubergine cubes, red pepper, onion/shallot and garlic, stirring frequently until veg soften, approx. 10 minutes. Add the oregano leaves and season
Remove aubergine halves from the oven and fill with the sautéed veg mixture and return to the oven for 5 minutes
Prepare the tahini dressing – whisk all the ingredients together in a small bowl
Serve the baked, filled aubergines with plenty of chopped parsley and the tahini dressing drizzled over
Other ways to serve....
You could also grate cheese and sprinkle with breadcrumbs instead of serving with the tahini dressing. (If you have stale bread don’t throw it away – whizz up in a processor or finely grate – then freeze until needed. They won’t take long to defrost)
When you have filled the aubergines with the sautéed veg mix, sprinkle with a handful of strong cheese such as mature Cheddar or Parmesan, and some breadcrumbs, return to the oven so the cheese melts and the breadcrumbs crisp. Skip the tahini dressing but serve with plenty of parsley.
Or you could also have this with hummous and some seedy sourdough or as a side veg for a meat or poultry dish.
Aubergines (also known as Eggplant) are rich in the antioxidant Nasunin, this anthocyanin gives the aubergine skin its deep purple colour and exerts a protective effect on essential fatty acids needed for brain function. Nasunin and other phytochemicals in aubergines are also believed to help lower LDL (bad) cholesterol levels. Aubergines are rich in fibre and provide a good source of vitamins B1 and B6 along with the minerals copper, manganese and magnesium.