Ok, ok yesterday’s one was not so crazy but it was raining like hell and of course there was some ice involved too.
Inspired by the cold and dull sky outside I went back into my kitchen – as wet as a chick as I had no umbrella and anyway I don’t think it would have helped! – and I looked into my shopping bag full of vegetables and things to make nice salads and juices, but I really felt like eating something warm instead.
I did the maths: mozzarella, aubergine….YES! I have everything I need!
I would consider 1 small size piece of mozzarella, a small to medium size chopped tomato can and one medium size aubergine to be enough per person, just to give you an idea so you can easily decide how much you’d like to cook.
Chopped tomatoes in a can – or fresh tomatoes if you like
The original recipe expects you to fry the aubergines in hot oil but I refuse to do it! For a lot of reasons that I can summarise easily: my kitchen is too small and a simply beautiful vegetarian plate gets as heavy as a stone placed on top of my tummy when I try to digest it if the aubergines have not been fried properly.
Stepping away from the frying idea – which to be honest, never crossed my mind – I sliced the aubergines quite thinly and grilled the slices on a hot pan (I realised I don’t have a grilling pan – a normal pan worked fine).
I didn’t add any other ingredient, I just grilled the aubergines on a very hot surface, turned them and put them aside.
If you want to be super precise you could slice all your aubergines, sprinkle some salt on top of them and let them rest for a bit so they will get rid of their bitter taste that they could sometimes have; after you will have to wash them under cold water before grilling them.
Slice your mozzarella quite thin too and start alternateting layers of aubergines, mozzarella and chopped tomatoes inside a baking plate; you can sprinkle oregano, salt and a bit of grated Parmesan between layers too.
I like to add my Parmesan on top only but it’s a personal choice, in the same way you can place a few basil leaves between layers and keep a few fresh leaves to decorate after cooking.
Prepare as many layers as you like, cover them with a final layer of tomato sauce, olive oil and sprinkle with Parmesan.
It doesn’t have to cook for too long but you need to leave it in the oven long enough for your mozzarella to melt and all the tastes to amalgamate!
I cooked mine for 15 mins at 180°C and I eat it warm but not too hot as I left it to chill a bit – despite the crazy weather it’s still Summer time!
I quite like it cold too so you can even cook it in advance!
It’s easy, quick and I don’t think it has many calories than a big salad so it is a good summer alternative as salads can be incredibly boring after a while!
Despite the salad, eating healthy blah blah blah bull*** the truth is that Parmesan Aubergines is a super classic that I love as it tastes like pizza in some way!!!