Melty Aubergine Bakes

2014-03-11 19.43.27You know when you are planning a meal and you realise you don’t have one ingredient? It always happens to me so I’ve learned to improvise. I’d already sliced an aubergine (but had no eggs) so I created theseĀ  – thick slices of aubergine underneath a tomato and onion layer, then covered with cheese and breadcrumbs. It’s dead quick and easy and doesn’t need many ingredients, have ago!

You will need: 1 large aubergine, 1 small onion, 2 big tomatoes, 2 garlic cloves, mixed herbs, salt, pepper, 25g cheese, 1 tablespoon cream cheese, 1 slice of breads worth of breadcrumbs, olive oil, 2 tablespoons tomato puree, balsamic vinegar and rocket to serve.

Dice your onion and pop in a big frying pan with a teaspoon of olive oil, finely chop your garlic cloves and add these. Cook for 5 minutes, chop the tomatoes into chunks and add these and the tomato puree to the pan. Add a big crack of black pepper, a pinch of salt, your cream cheese and some mixed herbs and then take the pan off the heat when the cheese has melted in.

20140311_190041Grate your cheese and mix it in a bowl with the breadcrumbs and a bit of pepper. Turn your oven on to 200 degrees. Chop your aubergine into 4 thick slices and place on a baking tray. Divide the tomato mixture between the slices and then sprinkle a big handful of cheese and breadcrumbs on top. Pop in the oven for 10 minutes.20140311_190545While that’s cooking, put your rocket on the plate and drizzle with a little balsamic and some good quality olive oil. When the aubergines are cooked put them on your salad and serve. Voila!

This dish seems really posh but it’s actually dead simple and doesn’t take more than 20 minutes. 1 slice of aubergine would be great for a starter and like always, add more cheese, or tomato if you like. It’s really healthy, cheap and delicious – what’s not to love?!

Love, Mrs Gardom

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Mozzarella Paninis with Homemade Veggie Tapenade

20131231_144411It’s really easy to fall into the habit of lunch being a cheese sandwich or a piece of toast and only making the effort with your evening meal. But as it’s new year and I decided to do a really lovely lunch. I also love a bargain, and picked up a big bag of paninis from Tesco that were in the reduced section for 50p. So this is what I did with them, lots of lovely gooey mozzarella cheese, homemade tapenade style dip and some lovely big tomatoes. A good lunch if I ever saw one. The quantities are for two people but go ahead and double them, half them, whatever!

You will need: 10 black olives, 3 cloves of garlic, 2 tablespoons olive oil, 2 paninis, 125g mozzarella cheese, pinch of mixed herbs, a big handful of walnuts, a big tomato and rocket to serve.20131231_141705Heat your oven to 200 degrees. Chop the paninis in half and drizzle each half with olive oil. Crush your garlic first in the pestle and mortar. When they are crushed, add the walnuts and then the olives and pound them to make a smooth paste. Add a pinch of mixed herbs, a tablespoon of olive oil and some lemon juice if you fancy.20131231_142234Spread your tapenade over the bottom two halves of your paninis. Now slice your mozzarella into thick slices and divide between the paninis covering the tapenade evenly. Slice your tomato and divide this as well. 20131231_142652Now put the tops of your paninis on top of the tomatoes and squish down well. Place on a baking tray and cook for 15 minutes in the oven. Take them out, make sure all your cheese has melted and serve on a bed of rocket with some balsamic vingear.

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And that’s it. A really lovely lunchtime treat that’s dead easy to make and would cost a bomb if you bought it in a cafe!

Enjoy, Love Mrs Gardom

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