Inspired by the Ottolenghi aubergine recipe yesterday I made this version of Turkish aubergine dish "Imam bayildi". Usually aubergines are fried however for this dish I have baked them in the oven.
10 baby aubergines, peeled and halved lengthwise
3 medium onions, cut in half and sliced 1-2mm thick
700 gr / 7 medium size tomatoes diced
5 garlic gloves sliced
25 gr / a small bunch of parsley
50ml Olive oil
1 teaspoon caster sugar
Start by putting the oven on the highest setting and lining a baking sheet with greaseproof paper.
Peeling and cut the aubergines in half lengthwise if you haven't already done so. Put the olive oil in a bowl big enough to take half of the aubergines. Season the olive oil with salt and pepper and put the aubergines in the bowl in 2 batches and coat them well. Don't trow away the left over olive oil, this will be used to fry onions.
Lay all the aubergines on the baking sheet cut sides facing up. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes or until they are golden brown and cooked.
While the aubergines are cooking put 3 table spoons of the olive oil left from the aubergines in a pan and once the oil is hot put the onions and cook on medium for 10 minutes or until golden and cooked.
Add the tomatoes and simmer for 3 minutes. Then add the garlic and parsley, simmer for 1 minute and take off the heat.
In an oven proof dish lay half of the aubergines at the bottom of the dish, then put half of the tomato sauce on it. Lay rest of the aubergines on top of the tomato sauce and top up with the rest of the tomato sauce.
Cover the dish and cook in oven gas 5 /375 /190 covered for 20 minutes, then take off the cover and cook for another 10 minutes.
Take it off the oven and leave to cool. Serve it in room temperature, like most of the Turkish olive oil dishes it is best served next day after it is rested.
Serve it with more chopped fresh parsley and a dollop of yoghurt.
Fresh parsley reduces the phenomenon of "garlic breath" so is used in most of the recipes that call for garlic so you can enjoy the garlic flavour without the side effects.