Stuffed Eggplant Sephardic Style

Charred Eggplant and Tomatoes with Harissa and Mint

Stuffed Eggplant Sephardic Style:

 

Ingredients:

  • 1 Large Eggplant
  • 3 tablespoon Extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 pound Ground Lamb or Beef
  • Salt to taste
  • Black pepper to taste
  • 2 Onions small diced
  • 1 Red Pepper small diced
  • 3 cloves Garlic minced
  • 3 teaspoons of Yemenite Spice “hawaiage”
  • 3 teaspoons Sweet paprika
  • 1/2 cups fresh parsley chopped
  • ½ cup fresh coriander chopped
  • 1 Tbsp Tomato Puree
  • 1 cups Bread crumbs
  • 2 Eggs
  • ½ cup Flour
  • ½ cup Vegetable or Canola Oil
  • 4 ripe tomatoes chopped
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Yemenite Spice Mixture: Hawaiij (pronounced Hawayej). Just as Indians use garam masala and Chinese cooks use five-spice powder, Israelis of Yemenite origins have special family recipes for Hawaiij, which they use to flavour their cooking and their coffee.

Preparation:

  1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Cut the eggplant in thick slices (width-wise) and then cut through the centre almost to the end to form a sandwich in which to hold the meat mixture.
  3. In a mixing bowl combine the ground meat with the finely diced onions, parsley, egg, and 1 cup of breadcrumbs and salt and pepper.
  4. Shape onto a small ball about the size of a large walnut and stuff it between the eggplant sandwiches
  5. Pass the eggplant through Flour, Egg and Breadcrumbs and shallow fry until golden on both sides and the transfer into a casserole dish.
  6. To prepare the sauce heat up the olive oil in a skillet, add the Yemenite spice, sweet paprika salt and pepper.
  7. Sauté the onion, fresh garlic and red pepper until lightly golden and then add the chopped tomatoes and reduce.
  8. Add 1 cup of water and cook down to a rich sauce.
  9. Add the chopped coriander, parsley and bay leaf.
  10. Pour over the eggplants and place in the oven for 1 hour until done.
  11.  Serve over a bed of Persian White Rice.

    By Chef Yochanan Lambiase