Aubergine and tomato gratin

8 December 2010


The tastiest aubergines are young and firm – about 2-3 inches in diameter, with a shiny smooth skin and a fresh green cap and stem. Avoid larger, older aubergines as they can taste woody and bitter. Don't worry if you've never cooked with aubergines before, they are so easy – no need to peel or deseed, just slice.

Aubergines are extremely low in calories (about 45 kcal each) but avoid frying them as they have an incredible capacity to soak up oil. Instead grill them, as with this which keeps the fat content to a minimum.

The chickpeas are a good source of manganese (needed for the production of some enzymes and hormones), as well as providing iron, folate and vitamin E.

1 aubergine, cut into 1cm thick slices

1 tbsp olive oil

2 cloves of garlic, crushed

2 large tomatoes. sliced

4 tbsp thick hummus or chickpea pate

1 small tub of fresh cheese sauce

2 tbsp freshly grated Parmesan

Salt and freshly ground pepper

Crush the garlic into the olive oil using a pestle and mortar. Place the aubergine slices on a grill rack, season, brush with half of the garlic mixture and place under the grill for 8 minutes until golden.

Add the slices of tomato to the grill rack, turn over the aubergine slices and place on top of the tomato. Brush with a little more garlic oil and grill for another 8 minutes.

Arrange the aubergine slices in a shallow heatproof dish and dot with the hummus or chickpea pate. Arrange the tomato slices on top and then repeat with another layer of aubergines and tomato.

Heat the cheese sauce in a pan and pour over the aubergines and tomatoes, sprinkle with the Parmesan and place under the grill for 5 minutes. Serve with a green salad.

Calories: 432 Fat: 4.31g Saturates: 1.96g Total Sugar: 2.16g Salt: 0.10g