As promised, here is the recipe for roasted aubergines and grilled tomatoes to complete the wonderful and colourful platter of vegetarian antipasti which we started last time with the roasted peppers and courgettes. The aubergines are normally cut into round slices. However, if you are using small to medium aubergines, you can also cut them into strips lengthwise. I also use breadcrumbs as an optional additional ingredient. Although the traditional Roman Jewish dish is made simply with herbs and without breadcrumbs, the breadcrumbs work particularly well with the tomatoes, adding flavour and texture. If you have any antipasti left over, they last a couple of days in the fridge or you can easily freeze them. Otherwise you can mix and roughly chop them, sauté in a frying pan with a drizzle of olive oil and use them as pasta sauce.
Preparation time: 1 hour.
Serves 4-6 as side dish or antipasti
● 8 vine/plum tomatoes or 4 large red beef tomatoes
● 2 aubergines
● Bunch of chopped flat parsley
● Granulated garlic/garlic powder
● Extra-virgin olive oil
● Breadcrumbs (optional)
● Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
● Preheat the fan oven to 200°C and line 2 to 3 oven trays with greaseproof paper.
● Wash the tomatoes, cut them in half lengthwise and lay them face up on one oven tray.
● Tip: as tomatoes can be watery, it is advisable to remove their seeds and juice so they do not split while roasting.
● Sprinkle some salt, pepper and garlic on top of each tomato half. If you are using breadcrumbs then sprinkle them on as well – about a teaspoon per half tomato.
● Finally, add the parsley and drizzle a little olive oil on top of each piece.
● Place the tray in the oven and roast for about 50 minutes to 1 hour, until the tomatoes are tender and start to turn brown. For the last 5-8 minutes put under the grill.
● While the tomatoes are in the oven prepare the aubergines. Wash them, cut off their ends and slice them into rounds of about half an inch.
● Brush the oven tray with olive oil and place the aubergine slices one next to the other - if needed use more than one tray.
● Sprinkle some salt, pepper and garlic on top of each slice and, if using, add the breadcrumbs. Finally add the parsley and drizzle olive oil on each slice. Roast for 30-40 minutes until golden.
● Once both the tomatoes and aubergines are ready, arrange them into a large serving platter, perhaps with the courgettes and peppers from my last recipe.
● Serve warm or at room temperature.