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Aubergine, red onion and minced beef bake

Aubergine, red onion and minced beef bake

 

The mild red onion flavor is offset by the spicy minced beef filling - use lamb if you prefer. You can scatter grated cheese over the top and brown the dish instead of using almonds and the egg custard.


Preparation time: 40 minutes
Cooking time: 1 hour
Serves 4

  • 450g (1 lb) lean minced beef

  • 2 tsp ground cumin

  • 1 Tbsp ground coriander

  • 1 tsp ground ginger

  • 400 g (14 oz) can chopped tomatoes

  • 1 Tbsp chopped fresh oregano

  • 2 bay leaves

  • Salt and black pepper

  • 2 medium aubergines, sliced

  • 150 ml (5 fl oz) olive oil

  • 1 large red onion, cut into thin rings

  • 40 g (1.5 oz) flaked almonds

  • 1 large egg, beaten

  • 250 ml (9 fl oz) milk

  1. Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas Mark 6.

  2. Cook the beef in a non-stick saucepan over a high heat until the fat and juices start to run. Add the spices and continue to cook until the meat is well browned.

  3. Add the tomatoes, oregano, bay leaves and some seasoning, then leave to simmer for about 20 minutes. Season again to taste.

  4. Fry the aubergine slices in two batches in a large frying pan. They will absorb all the oil and try to demand more, but don't give in! Fry until lightly browned.

  5. Arrange half the aubergine slices in the base of a buttered ovenproof dish, then pour on the beef. Cover with the remaining aubergine, pressing them down well into the browned beef.

  6. Separate the onion into rings and arrange them over the aubergine. Cover the foil then bake in the preheated oven for 40 minutes.

  7. Lower the oven temperature to 170C/325F/Gas Mark 3. Remove the bake from the oven, take off the foil and scatter the almonds over the onions.

  8. Beat the egg with the milk, add a little seasoning then pour the mixture over the almonds. Return to the oven for a further 15 to 20 minutes, until the topping is set. Serve hot with freshly cooked vegetables in season.

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