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Thursday, December 4, 2014

Baked aubergines with mozzarella and garlic-pomegranate-mint sauce

One of the most delicious things I've ever eaten. Make sure you use the freshest eggplants available, if you get bitter ones it will ruin the whole dish. 
It's easy to make, it just sits for a long time in the oven, but what pops out is pure heavenly comfort food. Enjoy.
Recipe source: Cătălina.

Last year: Pasta Arabbiata (Angry penne) (Italian)(vegan).
Two years ago: Grilled turkey breast with avocado-feta salsa.
Three years ago: Quesadillas with cheddar, bacon and cherry tomatoes (Mexican).
Four years ago: Cheese-stuffed mushrooms and cheese fussili with herbs and aioli; and Swedish-style salmon with vegetables and white sauce.

Ingredients (serves 2):
  • 2 small-ish eggplants
  • 125 g mozzarella (the best quality you can find)
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 30-40 ml extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons pomegranate molasses
  • 1 twig of fresh mint
  • salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 200 degrees C. 
In a small bowl, mix the oil, molasses, finely chopped garlic and finely chopped mint leaves. Also mix in salt (be generous, to compensate the molasses' sweetness) and pepper.

Wash the eggplants and cut off their ends. Cut them in half, lengthwise, and cut long lines into them, also lengthwise (this will help them soak up the sauce and the flavors better). Put them on a baking paper-lined tray, cut side up and divide the sauce between them:

Put them in the preheated oven and let them bake for 40-50 minutes or until really tender:

Top them with the sliced mozzarella:

Return to the oven for a further 10 minutes to get the cheese all melty and gooey. Take out, divide between serving plates and top the cheese puddles with an extra mint leaf.
It's done, dig in! (while they're still warm).

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