Eastern Aubergines

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Preparation info

  • Difficulty

    Medium

  • Serves

    4

Appears in

I love how this is delicately flavoured with those distinct Eastern spices of cumin and coriander, and then crowned prettily with pomegranate rubies and a burst of freshness from the mint. It’s all kinds of wonderful and one of my favourites.

Preparation time 15 minutes
Cooking time 40 minutes (mostly unattended)

Ingredients

What you’ll Need

Aubergines

  • 4 medium aubergines, halved lengthways
  • olive oil

Mince

  • ½ Tbsp olive oil
  • ½ Tbsp butter
  • 250 g beef, lamb or chicken mince
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp dried chilli flakes
  • 1 Tbsp tomato paste
  • healthy natural sweetener, to taste
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 heaped cup roughly chopped tomatoes

To serve

  • ½ cup Greek yoghurt
  • fresh mint leaves
  • 2 Tbsp slivered almonds or pine nuts, roasted
  • pomegranate rubies
  • 1 ripe avocado, sliced

Method

What to do

  1. Preheat the oven to 200 °C.
  2. Drizzle the aubergines with a little olive oil and place on a nonstick baking tray. Place in the oven for 30–40 minutes.
  3. While the aubergines are in the oven, prepare the mince. Heat the olive oil and butter in a medium-sized saucepan over medium-high heat. When the butter starts to foam, add the mince and cook for 4–5 minutes until golden. Add the remaining ingredients, except the tomatoes, and cook for a further 5 minutes until the onion has softened. Add the tomatoes, bring to a simmer and then leave to cook gently with the lid on for another 25–30 minutes.
  4. When the aubergines are cooked, remove from the oven and serve immediately on warmed plates. Spoon over some of the cooked mince, then add yoghurt, mint leaves, nuts and pomegranate rubies to garnish. Serve the avocado slices on the side.

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