serves 4

01 Ingredients

  • 2 medium brinjals

  • 2 Fior di Latte mozzarella balls drained

  • 180g grated parmigiano 

  • 2 medium size ripe tomatoes

  • 1 large garlic clove crushed and finely chopped

  • 400ml Italian tomato passata

  • 100g Italian tomato puree

  • 75 ml white or red wine

  • 1tsp cayenne pepper

  • 1tbs finely chopped fresh sage or rosemary

  • Olive oil 

  • Salt

  • 1sprig sage

02 Preparation

  1. Heat the oven on high grill 

  2. Slice the brinjals into 10mm thick rounds 

  3. Lay each round flat on a grid, salt and allow to stand for 20 min to draw out the juices

  4. Pat dry, turn over, and repeat on the other side

  5. On low heat, gently heat some olive oil and the crushed garlic in a pot

  6. Stir, add the chopped sage and cayenne, and cook for a minute

  7. Add the tomato puree, passata and wine, stir, and with the lid on bring to the boil

  8. Salt, reduce the heat, and allow to simmer gently with the lid on for 30 min stirring occasionally so that the tomato does not stick to the bottom of the pan. The sauce must have a rich, thick consistency

  9. Place the brinjal rounds on an oiled baking tray, sprinkle on olive oil, and cook beneath the grill for 5min 

  10. Remove from the oven, turn the brinjal rounds and cook for another 5 minutes

  11. Place the oven rack in the centre of the oven and change the oven setting to 220ºC bake 

  12. Slice the tomato and drained mozzarella balls into 5mm rounds and pat out the moisture using a paper towel

  13. In an oven proof dish, lay at an angle, a slice of brinjal, a slice of mozzarella and a slice of tomato

  14. Repeat this process, forming 2 -3 rows next to each other until they are all used

  15. Pour over the tomato sauce, and sprinkle a thick layer of the parmigiano to cover

  16. Bake for 20 minutes or till the cheese has melted 

  17. Remove the dish from the oven 

  18. Place the rack below the grill and change the oven setting to grill (210ºC)  

  19. Grill the aubergine dish under the grill until the cheese is bubbling and a nice caramel colour

03 Plating

Garnish with the sage sprig and serve the oven dish on the table for people to help themselves

Cook’s Notes

Use the Heirloom variety tomatoes if in season. Add extra cayenne to the tomato sauce if you prefer it more spicy