Ingredients (to fit a small, oval pie dish, 21x13cm or 1.1ltr)
1 portion basic tomato sauce plus one clove of garlic, sliced
1 large aubergine or two small aubergines
1 mozzarella ball, halved and then sliced
Generous handful of grated parmesan
Olive oil for frying
Follow the instructions for making the basic tomato sauce. Add the sliced garlic about five minutes after you have started cooking the onion and leave to cook slowly together before following the rest of the recipe.
While the tomato sauce is cooking, finely slice the aubergine (mine were approximately the width of a pound coin) and heat some olive oil on a pan over a medium heat. Gently fry the aubergine slices until they are brown on the outside and nicely softened. This may take some time so be patient. When each batch is finished, remove and leave on a plate. There is no need to drain on kitchen paper, this dish works well with extra oil!
When the sauce and aubergine are ready, preheat your oven to 180C fan, or 200C if not using fan, and start to assemble your dish. Put around three dessert spoonfuls of sauce in the bottom of the dish and place a layer of aubergine on top. Dot a third of the mozzarella on and then repeat the sauce/aubergine/mozzarella for a second layer. Spoon any remaining sauce on the top of the second layer, add the rest of the mozzarella and a generous handful of parmesan and bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown on top. Allow to cool slightly before serving. Good with fresh, crusty bread.