Aubergine Flan

Aubergine Flan

Its time for the mighty Aubergine to shine. Once labeled the poor mans meat ,it is now experiencing a resurgence in popularity and rightly so. Aubergine has a capacity to carry flavour, so it goes well with cheese, spices, in curries or tagines. it is full of anti oxidants, fibre calcium, folic acid and vitamins B1 and B6.
This is a simple, flavour filled dish that fills you with happiness on cold wet winter days.

2 large aubergines or eggplants
250g feta cheese
2 eggs, lightly whisked
3 thick slices stale sourdough
100g gruyere or sharp cheddar, grated + 20g extra
1/4 cup olive oil
Prick the aubergines all over and place in a 180c preheated oven to roast for 40-45 minutes.

Cut the crusts off the bread and tear into rough chunks before placing in a bowl of cold water.

When the aubergines are completely soft, remove from the oven, [ Leave the oven on to bake the flan] cut them in half carefully [there will be a lot of steam] and scoop out the flesh. Put the flesh in a colander to drain off the juice and to cool slightly. Press the flesh with the back of your spoon to release more liquid.

Squeeze the water out of the bread and add the bread, crumbled feta, eggs, gruyere or cheddar and all but a tablespoon of oil to a mixing bowl and stir to combine.

Chop the aubergine flesh roughly and add to the bowl, stirring it vigorously into the cheese mixture.
Season with freshly ground pepper [there should be enough salt from the feta]

Spoon the mixture into an oiled oven dish and sprinkle with the remaining oil and 20g of cheddar or gruyere.

Bake for 1 hour until brown and puffed.

Allow the flan to cool slightly before serving with a green salad.

The flan is at its most delicious warm or at room temperature, so if you are pre preparing it and refrigerating it, make sure you give it an hour on the bench before serving. Serves 6-8

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