dinsdag 23 juli 2013

Melanzane: Egg Plant with Tomato Sauce and Mozzarella

The idea of this recipe comes from my brother-in-law. But I modified it a bit to my taste and my ingredients. People also call this a melanzane.

Basically you need:
  • 1 Egg plant
  • 3 Tomatoes
  • Mozzarella (Gruyère works too) 
  • Parmezan cheese
  • Spices (thyme, oregano, basil, pepper, salt, sugar, nutmeg, cinnamon...)
  • Ketchup
  • Red wine
  • Bread crumbs
First you cut the egg plant into long thin slices (2 cm x 8 cm). You stir fry them in a good amount of butter or olive oil, until they get soft and absorb all the fat. Add pepper, salt and spices to your taste. Then put the egg plant slices in a ceramic baking pan. Cover the egg plant layer with a second layer of mozzarella or gruyère. Add some parmezan cheese.

Second, you chop your tomatoes into little blocks, almost tomato concassé. Then you stir fry them at medium heat for about 15 minutes. Add some ketchup and red wine. Spice it up with thyme, oregano, basil, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and pepper. The most important part is to add sugar here, so that the sourness of the tomatoes will go away. The ketchup will help a little bit here. To get some binding, you can add butter.

Now put the tomatoes onto the egg plant/cheese mixture and add a layer of bread crumbs. Sometimes people add a beaten egg or two to it before baking it, it gives an extra touch. Try it.

Finally put the entire baking pan in the oven at 180 °C for about half an hour.

It was delicious, especially the combination of cheese and tomatoes gave the extra touch to the flavor. One comment though, I had to bake it longer so that the bread crumbs can become crispy. I didn't bake it long enough, because I was afraid the sauce would become dry. But it was just right.

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