Aubergine Parcels with Chicken

Tavuklu Islim Kababı

banner

Preparation info

  • Difficulty

    Easy

Appears in

Yashim Cooks Istanbul

Yashim Cooks Istanbul

By Jason Goodwin

Published 2016

  • About

The American name, eggplant, well describes the way Turks regard this vegetable: mother of vegetables, the fons et origo of all good cooking. Treat aubergines firmly: you have to impose on them a bit, otherwise they consume oil and can even taste bitter. Stuffed, sliced, mashed, stewed, fried: the cooks at Topkapi Palace devised many ways of cooking aubergines. They had more varieties to play with than the solemn, shiny purple sort we’re used to. In Turkey, aubergines range from near black to pale lilac, and from zeppelin to baseball bat. Use a peeler or a very sharp knife to take strips off the skin lengthways all round the aubergine, like a striped humbug, and soak sliced aubergines in cold salty water for half an hour, and squeeze out the water afterwards.

Ingredients

  • garlic cloves 3, crushed and chopped
  • lemons 2, juiced
  • allspice ½ tsp,crushed
  • chicken thighs 8, skinless,boneless, cut in two
  • aubergine (eggplant) 4
  • sunflower oil
  • almonds 2 tbsp, flaked, toasted

Method

  • Mix the garlic, lemon juice and allspice and pour over the chicken for a couple of hours in a cool place.
  • Stripe the aubergines and slice lengthways finely–you will need eight slices from each one–and soak in cold salty water. After half an hour squeeze out the water.
  • Heat a quarter of an inch of oil in a frying pan. When it starts to smoke, fry the aubergine slices in batches until they are golden. Spread them on kitchen paper to drain.
  • On a board, lay two slices one across the other in the shape of a cross, put a piece of raw chicken in the middle, and wrap it in the aubergine. Tuck each parcel seam-side down onto an oiled baking dish.
  • Shake the remaining marinade over the parcels, and sprinkle them with the almonds. Cover with foil and bake in the oven at 190°C for 40 minutes.