Aubergines are gaining in popularity due to the fact that they are low in carbs, full of vitamins and minerals, packed with fibre and suitable for gluten-free and vegan diets. By adding flavours such as chili flakes, pomegranate seeds and tahin, you won’t miss the flavour or texture of meat at all. The aubergine is a versatile vegetable that regularly appears on the menu at home. Baking aubergines in the oven makes them wonderfully soft and intensifies their flavour. I have allowed one aubergine per person in this vegan stuffed aubergine recipe, but obviously it depends on how big the aubergines are. A very large aubergine could be halved after it is cooked to serve two people.
Pre-heat the oven to 180°C.
- Before you start with the chickpeas, it’s worth reading the extra tip from the chef below.
- Rinse the chickpeas, drain well and pat them dry on kitchen paper.
- Mix half of the chickpeas with the (smoked) paprika, two tbsp of olive oil and some salt.
- Spread the chickpeas out on a baking sheet lined with greaseproof paper. Put to one side while you prepare the aubergines.
- Slice the aubergines lengthwise, cutting down until you are about three-quarters of the way through, and place them in an oven dish.
- Pull the two sides of each aubergine apart a little, then sprinkle with the other two tbsp of olive oil, salt and pepper.
- Bake the aubergines (depending on their size) for about 40 minutes or until tender.
- Put the baking sheet with the chickpeas into the oven with the aubergines and bake until golden and crisp in about the same time. Half-way through the cooking time, give the tray a good shake to turn the chickpeas over. PLEASE NOTE: larger aubergines will take longer (about 50 minutes). In that case, remove the chickpeas from the oven earlier.
- In the meantime, mix the other half of the chickpeas with the tahin, lemon juice and garlic. When the aubergines are ready, add about 200 g of their flesh to this mixture. Beat until you have a creamy hummus-like purée. Season to taste with salt, pepper and chili flakes.
- Place the aubergines on the plates and spoon over the purée.
- Sprinkle the roasted chickpeas and the pomegranate seeds over the top.
- Garnish the stuffed aubergines with the parsley.
Serve with fresh naan bread.
Tips from the author
Don’t forget to reserve the liquid from the chickpeas. This liquid (aquafaba) is a fantastic ingredient for people who eat only vegan food. It can be used to bake meringues, for example. You won’t taste that they are made with chickpea leftovers. Definitely worth a try!