Aubergine Boats

Serves 4 as a starter or 2 as a main course

Aubergine Boats make for a succulent meal. Particularly nice served with our special cous cous or   quinoa  recipes - or a creamy potato salad

2 large aubergines
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, crushed
85g/3oz mushrooms, finely chopped
50g/2oz rolled oats
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp tomato purée
4 tbsp passata (sieved tomatoes, sold in jars or cartons)
1 tbsp fresh bouquet garni OR 1 tsp mixed dried herbs
Salt and black pepper

Sauce
1 clove garlic, chopped
1 spring onion, chopped
1 tbsp olive oil
1 x 400g tin chopped tomatoes
1 tbsp tomato purée
1⁄2 tsp brown sugar
Black pepper
12 fresh basil leaves, chopped OR 2 tsp dried basil

    1. Bring a large pan of water to the boil and place both whole aubergines in it. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes. Preheat oven to 350ºF/180ºC/Gas Mark 4.

    2. Drain the aubergines, chop off the stem ends, slice them in half lengthways and allow to cool. Scoop out the aubergine flesh - but leave enough around the sides so that they don’t collapse.

    3. Chop the flesh, and fry in oil with the onion for about 5 minutes until the aubergine is browned.

    4. Add the garlic and mushrooms and fry for a further few minutes. Stir in the tomato purée, passata and oats and stir over a low heat until the oats are softened. (Add extra oil, passata or water if the mixture is too dry.)

    5. Remove from heat, add the bouquet garni, salt and pepper, and mix well. Place the aubergine skins on a greased baking tray and fill them with the mixture. Place in the centre of oven for 15 minutes.

    6. Meanwhile make the tomato sauce. Gently fry the garlic and onion in the oil for a few minutes. Add the remaining sauce ingredients and warm gently on lowest heat.

    7. Remove the aubergines from the oven and serve topped with tomato sauce.

Aubergine, basil, bouquet garni, Christmas, Father's day, Garlic, Mother's day, Mushrooms, Oats, Onions, Summer, Tomatoes, Winter, Main courses, Wine & Dine, Mediterranean