Cooked by Taor Morris on our Vegetarian Italian Potluck themed evening. Recipe taken from JamieOliver.com with a few changes made. Serves 6-8 people Suitable for Vegetarians (who eat cheese)
Ingredients: 6 large aubergine olive oil 2 onions, peeled and finely chopped 2 cloves of regular garlic, peeled and finely sliced 2 heaped teaspoon dried oregano 4x400 g good-quality tinned plum tomatoes sea salt freshly ground black pepper a little cider vinegar 6 large handfuls Parmesan cheese, freshly grated (but you actually need a lot more) 4 handfuls dried breadcrumbs 300 g buffalo mozzarella
Method: Remove the stalks from the aubergines, slice them up into 1cm thick slices, and put to one side. Get the frying pan really hot. Meanwhile, put 2 or 3 lugs of olive oil into a large pan on a medium heat. Add the onions, garlic and dried oregano and cook for 10 minutes, until the onion is soft and the garlic has a tiny bit of colour. If you're using tinned tomatoes, break them up and add them to the onions, garlic and oregano. Give the mixture a good stir, then put a lid on the pan and simmer slowly for 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, grill the aubergines on both sides until lightly charred – do them in batches, as they don't all fit into your griddle pan in one go. As each batch is finished, remove them to a tray and carry on grilling the rest until they're all nicely done. When the tomato sauce is reduced and sweet, season it carefully with salt, pepper and a tiny swig of cider or white wine vinegar. You can leave the sauce chunky or you can purée it.
Get yourself an earthenware type dish (25 x 12–15cm). Put in a small layer of tomato sauce, then a thin scattering of Parmesan, followed by a single layer of aubergines. Repeat these layers until you've used all the ingredients up, finishing with a little sauce and another good sprinkling of Parmesan. Toss the breadcrumbs in olive oil with a little oregano and sprinkle them on top of the Parmesan. Add on top the torn-up mozzarella.
Place the dish in the oven and bake at 190°C/375°F/gas 5 for half an hour until golden, crisp and bubbly. It's best eaten straight away, but it can also be served cold.