Stuffed Aubergine Boats
First off, a clarification. The black crust you see in the photo is not burnt soufflé but aubergine skin. I cooked these boats in a frying pan instead of baking them in an oven and had flipped them over to brown the top side which is when any residue skin of the aubergine from the pan got stuck to them.
I suppose I could have cooked the aubergine side for less amount of time to prevent the skin from getting charred but I got so engrossed in Steve Buscemi’s entrance second episode into the fourth series of The Sopranos that I cooked them a bit longer than needed. Honestly though, when you have two great talents like Mr. Buscemi and the late great Mr. Gandolfini sharing the screen space, for once, it is easy to forget the stove (at least, that’s what happened to me).
Coming to today’s recipe of souffléd aubergine boats, it was an experiment which I thought should work but was also aware that it may not. Specially because I was making these in a frying pan…
if you like aubergine and are fond of eggs, I think you would like these
They are surprisingly very light on the stomach and are good with some steamed vegetables (as you can tell from the photo, I had mine with french beans and sweetcorn).
If you plan to bake them in the oven, put them in an ovenproof dish and cook uncovered for about 40 minutes.
1 Medium sized aubergine
1 Head of garlic
2-3 Red chillies
2-3 Fillets of anchovy in oil (optional)
2 Medium eggs
1 Tablespoon grated cheddar cheese
1 Tablespoon pine nuts
1 Teaspoon mixed herbs
1 + 1 Teaspoon olive oil
Salt to taste
- Peel, wash and finely chop the onion.
- Wash and finely dice the tomato.
- Wash and finely slice the chilli.
- Peel and chop the garlic.
- Dry roast the pine nuts till they turn a couple of shades darker.
- Take a wide based frying pan and heat 1 teaspoon oil in it.
- Add the chopped onion, tomato, chilli, anchovies (if using) and salt to taste.
- Mix well, cover and cook for 5 minutes.
- While the vegetables are cooking, get working on the aubergine.
- Wash it and slice it horizontally from the tip to the stem.
- Scoop out the flesh leaving 1/2 inch wall of aubergine skin.
- Finely chop the flesh and add it to the onion mixture along with the mixed herbs.
- Cover and let it cook for 5 minutes.
- Rub a little bit of salt inside the aubergine boats.
- Rub 1 teaspoon oil outside the aubergine boats. Set aside.
- Once the aubergine flesh and onion have cooked, take the pan off the heat and let this mixture cool down.
- After the mixture is completely cool, add the toasted pine nuts and cheese. Mix well.
- Now gently beat the two eggs and fold them into the aubergine mixture.
- Combine everything together and stuff the aubergine boats with this mixture.
- Heat a frying pan and place the aubergine boats, skin side down.
- Cover, lower heat and let the aubergine cook for about 10 to 15 minutes.
- Uncover and if you see that the eggs have set and the soufflé risen, flip the boats over gently.
- Cook the other side for about 5 to 10 minutes.
- Flip over once again so that the soufflé side is up.
- Serve hot.