Aubergines belong to a group of plants called the "nightshade family" (which includes tomatoes, potatoes and peppers). Aubergine are technically fruits as they contain seeds and grow from a flowering plant, but most of us view them as a vegetable.
Aubergines are a good source of fibre and antioxidants and are low in calories and a source of vitamins B1 and B6.
Baked, stuffed aubergines are not just for vegans or vegetarians! They have quite a satiating texture and when combined with a stuffing that includes a protein source such as lentils, they can be a filling dish all by themselves, without the need for meat or fish!
Time: Approximately 1 hour in total
1 large aubergine
180g dry red lentils
½ a vegetable stock cube
1 red onion
2 garlic cloves
1 red / yellow pepper
1 tsp coconut or olive oil
Salt and pepper
20 black pitted olives
4 tbsp sundried tomato paste
Fresh basil to garnish
Bag of mixed salad leaves
1. Preheat the oven to 220C.
2. Cut the aubergine in half lengthways and scoop out the flesh, leaving a shell approximately ½ cm thick. Set the flesh aside for later. Place the hollowed out aubergine halves face down in a roasting tin and fill the aubergine with water to 1cm deep. Bake in oven for about 15 mins until it softens.
3. Rinse the lentils and place in a saucepan with ½ a vegetable stock cube and 500ml water. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 15-20 mins or until softened and beginning to break down. Remove from the heat and drain any excess liquid.
4. Finely chop the onion and garlic and dice the pepper and scooped out aubergine flesh. Heat the coconut oil in a pan and add the onion and garlic. Season with salt and pepper and cook for 4-5 mins until softened.
5. Add the pepper and aubergine flesh and continue to cook until softened. Add the spinach and allow to wilt before adding the drained cooked lentils. Stir well.
6. Halve the olives and add alongside the sundried tomato paste.
7. Spoon the lentil mixture into the hollowed out aubergine shells and return to the oven for 10-15 mins until nicely roasted.
8. Scatter with basil and serve with ½ bag of mixed leaves and a wedge of lemon per person.
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These blog artlces are written for educational & informational purposes only and are not a subsitute for medical advice.