I love aubergines and we grow a lot of them. This year even more than usual because a neighbour gave us some extra plants when we had already bought the grafted ones we usually grow and which are so productive. Today I picked nine of them and made parmigiana de melanzane, an old favourite of mine for which there are plenty of recipes so I won’t give one here. I’ll just say that the main ingredients are layers of aubergine slices, onions, garlic and tomatoes, topped with parmesan cheese and baked in the oven. I like having the chance to make extra dishes which can be stored in the freezer for when we’re too busy to cook.
This was last night’s way with aubergine – one of my versions of baba ganoush, originally a Lebanese dish, a purée of roast aubergine mixed with spices. I put two whole aubergines in the oven and baked them until they were soft, then peeled them and puréed the flesh with two large cloves of garlic, some ground cumin, some ground paprika, salt, a couple of tablespoons of yoghurt and some lemon juice to taste. To serve it, I garnished it with some toasted whole cumin seeds. It goes well with crusty bread and raw vegetables as a first course, here with cucumber and cherry tomatoes straight from the garden.
I meant to upload this as part of yesterday’s post, but as I was writing it I could hear a thunderstorm approaching and wanted to turn everything off before it arrived. We had two tremendous storms for an hour before midnight and then another hour at around 6 this morning, with heavy rain, flashes of lightning and crashes of thunder with hardly a break between them. It was needed to clear the air and has done the garden a lot of good. Luckily there was no damage to our plants, just one pepper plant that had fallen over but not broken and needed re-tying.