Stuffed Aubergine 

A super simple, low calorie, high flavour and healthful meal, approved by vegans and non vegans alike! Aubergines are rich in antioxidants, vitamins B1 and B6 as well as magnesium and manganese and make the perfect vehicle for the garlicky, tomatoey filling. Add a in some mozzarella and you’ve got yourself an aubergine pizza boat! 

Serves two – as ever, organic veg is always recommended. 

Prep time 20 mins + cook time 20 mins

  • 1 large aubergine halved lengthways (300/400g)
  • 1/2 a large red or orange pepper, deseeded and finely chopped 
  • 100g white mushrooms, finely chopped or grated
  • 1 medium red onion finely chopped 
  • 2 or 3 large cloves of garlic, crushed or finely minced 
  • 100g black beans drained and rinsed 
  • 2tbsp tomato purée 
  • 1/2 tbsp of balsamic vinegar
  • 2tsp coconut oil (I use Lucy bee)
  • 2 handfuls fresh basil, roughly chopped (including stalks, they have the most flavour!) 
  • 10g flaked almonds or pine nuts optional
  • Salt, pepper, cayenne pepper to taste 
  • 2 tbsp water as required

Pre heat your oven to 180 degrees and then start by carefully cutting the centres out of your aubergine halves, being sure to leave about 1cm round the edge so that they don’t collapse when cooking and set aside the removed aubergine flesh. 

Place the prepared halves into a roasting tray, open side up, season with a salt and pepper, sprinkle with about a table spoon of water, cover with foil and place in the warmed oven to soften for 20 mins. 

 While the aubergine halves are softening, heat the coconut oil in a non stick frying pan and once it’s hot, add the crushed/ minced garlic and let in brown and relapse it’s delicious flavours for a minute. Add the onions and let them sweat with the garlic, stirring regularly until the onions are slightly translucent. Add the chopped red or orange pepper and a dash of water and keep stirring until the water is absorbed/mostly evaporated and then add the mushrooms, aubergine flesh, balsamic vinegar, a dash more water if required, salt, pepper, cayenne and the tomato purée. Thoroughly combine the mixture adding a little more water if it seems too dry. Once the veg is all almost cooked through, add the black beans and fresh basil, (keeping aside a bit for decorative purposes) little more water, more seasoning if desired, stir and remove from the heat. 

At this point your aubergine should be fairly soft but still maintaining its shape – remove from the oven and carefully spoon the filling into each half. Add strips of mozzarella or cheese of choice to the top (if using!) and return the dish to the oven for another 15 or 20 mins to finish cooking.

Once the food is piping hot, remove from the oven and serve with a sprinkling of fresh basil and toasted flaked almonds or pine nuts + salad and more veg or grilled chicken/fish/more cheese!