Melanzane alla Parmigiana (Aubergine with Parmesan)
I love Italy, I love everything about it; the architecture, the language, the animated ways of communicating, but I especially love the rituals observed around eating, in this stunning country.
This naturally gluten-free dish is one of the first that I cooked, on a culinary trip to Lazio, a number of years ago. I guess you could call it a vegetarian lasagne that I’ve veganised. It’s hearty and meaty, its packed with flavour and it’s made in one pot!
I’ve made a few changes to the construction of this dish, as I found the layering-lasagne-type method difficult to serve up, without it looking like mush on a plate. This new way takes a little more time, but it looks so much better served up now, so it’s worth it. If you have kids, get them on board with the making, it’s easy and fun!
Now, instead of layering strips of aubergine, I create little rolls:
Involtini di Melanzane alla Parmigiana! Buonissima!
What you’ll need: Serves 4-6
- 3 Aubergines (the longer, slimmer ones work better that the rounder ones)
- Basil leaves
- 3 large tomatoes
- Vegan Pizza Cheese (I use Vio Life Pizza or Original Cheese)
- Vegan Parmesan Cheese
- Basic Tomato and Basil Sauce
- Some olive oil
1. Preheat your oven to 160°C. Cut the aubergines length ways into 0.5cm strips. Brush a large oven tray with some olive oil and arrange the aubergine slices.
2. Brush the tops of the aubergines with a little more olive oil and gently cook until they are soft.
3. While the aubergines are cooking you can cut the tomatoes into 1cms lengths, dice the vegan pizza cheese and grate the vegan parmesan cheese so that you’re all set up for rolling.
4. Remove the aubergines and allow to cool. In the meantime spoon some of the basic tomato and basil sauce onto the bottom of a casserole dish.
5. Now it’s time to make the rolls, gather up the kiddy troops and set each one a work station… or else you could just do it yourself.
6. Lay each strip of aubergine down with the widest part closest to you. Place one basil leaf on top, followed by a slice of tomato, some cheese and season well with salt and pepper.
7. Now roll the aubergine strip away from you encasing the ingredients inside.
8. Arrange in the casserole dish leaving a little space between each one. When the dish is full cover with more of the tomato and basil sauce and finish with some grated cheese.
9. Place in the oven and cook at 180°C for about 30 minutes or until the top is golden.
If you try this dish at home please take a photo of it and tag @thetinyvegankitchen on Instagram, or @thetinyVK on Twitter – I’d love to see them! xTx
Share and enjoy!
Tanya O’Halloran – The Tiny Vegan Kitchen