Spicy Stuffed Eggplant
Today’s recipe is meat stuffed spicy eggplant inspired from Lebanese and Turkish Cuisine. Recently I am trying lot of stuffed dishes with chicken,squid and fish. This stuffed eggplant is now one of my top favorites. Eggplant is a versatile veggie and cooked in the right way, you can create innumerable recipes with it.Fried or baked eggplant is tender and tasty and goes well with rice. If you are not a great fan of eggplant/aubergine, try this stuffed version.It is insanely good and I am sure will change the way you think about this humble veggie.
Stuffed eggplant is great as a main course dish. You can serve it with rice,bread or with fresh salad and you have a satisfying dinner. Recently I have been trying a Mediterranean diet and this dish is perfect and filling with veggie salad. It is also perfect when you have guests as it is filling and makes a pretty presentation.In Turkish and Mediterranean region Karniyarik is an imperial dish fit for a King or chieftain.You can use lentils and mushroom for a vegetarian version.There is also a Thai version of stuffed eggplant using chicken and spicy
sambal.You can pan fry the eggplant,steam it or grill it until the skin is
charred and the pulp tests soft when pierced with a fork. You can serve stuffed eggplant as an appetizer too. Cut into thick one inch slices,grill them and top with the filling or use small variety eggplant for bite size individual servings. This filling freezes like a charm, so feel free to make a big batch. You can be creative with it, top it on a sandwich or use it in a wrap. The options are endless. The recipe is adapted from the book The Frugal Gourmet,by Jeff Smith and Food and Wine Try this you will surely love it.
Cooking time- 45 minutes
Cuisine- Turkish recipe
Ground lamb or beef- 1 pound
Tomato puree- 1 cup
Chopped onion- 1 large
Garlic- 3 cloves
Chopped red bell pepper- 1 cup
Chopped parsley- 1/4 cup
Toasted pine nuts- 1 tbs
Tomato Paste- 2 tbs
Hot pepper paste- 2 tbs
Paprika- 1 tsp (optional)
Ground all spice- 1/2 tsp
Ground Cumin-1/2 tsp
Cinnamon powder- 1/4 tsp
Black pepper and salt to taste
Ghee- 1 tsp
Oil- 2 tsp
Sliced green bell pepper or tomato- for garnish
Steps to make this recipe..
Step one is to bake the eggplant with salt and pepper till it is soft in the inside.
Step two is to make the spicy and flavorful filling with meat onions and tomatoes.
Final stage is to spoon in the filling and on top of the eggplant and bake. Keep reading for the detailed step by step instructions.
Cut eggplant into half length wise. Sprinkle salt cover and set aside for 10 minutes. Using a paper towel pat dry.
You can use the pan fry method or bake in the oven. Drizzle eggplant with oil , salt and pepper to taste and place on baking sheet. Set oven temperature to 350 degree and bake until the skin is
charred and the pulp is soft when pierced with a fork. Using the fork gently push down gently till it forms like a boat or a depression enough to spoon in the filling.
To make the filling,heat ghee and oil in a pan and add ground meat and saute till the meat is slightly brown. Add chopped onions, garlic and bell pepper and cook for 3-4 minutes. Add tomato puree and simmer for 5-6 minutes or till the oil separates. Mix toasted pine nuts,tomato paste, hot pepper paste and all the spice powder. Cover and cook for 8-10 minutes or till all the water evaporates. Mix in the chopped parsley and switch off the flame. Allow this mixture to cool down a bit.
Place the baked eggplant in a baking dish.Spoon this filling on top of the baked eggplant. Place sliced green bell pepper or sliced tomatoes. Bake at 350 degree F for about 10 minutes. Serve with flavored rice or salad or pita bread.
Hope you will all enjoy!