This Italian classic is a great favourite of ours, but it’s
usually super-high in calories because aubergines soak
up such a huge amount of oil. In this lighter version. we
bake the aubergine slices instead of frying and the result
is just as delicious but uses much less oil. A beautifully
satisfying, comforting dish, so dive in and enjoy.
Preheat the oven to 200°C/Fan 180°C/Gas 6. Mix the olive oil with
a tablespoon of water. Place the aubergine slices on 2 or 3 baking
trays lined with baking parchment. Brush the slices sparingly with the
olive oil and water mix, then season with salt and pepper. Roughly
break up the sprigs of herbs and sprinkle them over the aubergines.
Bake in the oven for 25–30 minutes until the slices are squidgy in
the middle and nicely browned. Discard the herbs.
While the aubergines are baking, make the sauce. Heat the olive oil
in a saucepan and add the onion. Add a splash of water and sauté the
onion gently until translucent. Add the garlic and continue to sauté
for another 2 or 3 minutes. Sprinkle in the oregano and cinnamon,
then pour the tomatoes and red wine into the pan. Rinse out the can
with 100ml of water and add this too. Season with salt and pepper and
bring the sauce to the boil. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes, then
remove the lid and continue to simmer until the sauce is well reduced.
To assemble, spread a spoonful of the sauce over the base of an
ovenproof dish. Add a layer of aubergines and a couple of torn basil
leaves. Continue until you have used up all the aubergines and sauce,
pressing down well in between each layer.
Add more basil and dot with the torn-up mozzarella. Bake in the oven
for 25–30 minutes until well browned and bubbling.
Info per serving: calories: 325, protein (g) 17.5, carbs (g) 11, sugar (g) 10, fat (g) 20, saturated fat (g) 11, fibre (g) 7.5, salt (g) 0.8
The Hairy Dieters' Simple Healthy Food: A Guide to Losing Weight and Staying Healthy by Si King and Dave Myers is published by Seven Dials on 12 May in trade paperback at £16.99, photography by Andrew Hayes-Watkins
Try one of our other delicious Hairy Biker recipes, such as vegetable enchiladas, homity pie and mushroom bourguignon.
Alternatively, visit our Italian recipe section for more tastes of Italy, or be inspired by one of our other aubergine recipes.