I love this Italian vegetarian dish very much, so I came up with my own version. I’m very happy to share it with you!


For the tomato sauce 

3 tbs olive oil (plus more to drizzle over the aubergine)

400g tin chopped tomatoes 

1/2 cup red wine

150g red onion (chopped)

4 garlic cloves (chopped)

1 tsp crushed chilli (optional)

1 tbs brown sugar 

2 bay leaves 

1 tbs thyme leaves 

Salt and pepper to taste 

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3 big aubergines (in thick slices)

250g fresh tomato chopped (de-seeded and skinless)

150g mozzarella cheese 

150g grated parmesan cheese 

3 tbs fresh basil leaves 

1/2 cup fresh breadcrumbs 

75g pine nuts (roasted)


Heat the olive oil, add garlic and onion and cook for around 7 minutes. Add chopped tomato, bay leaves and thyme, cook until oil appears on the surface then add the sugar and wine, cook for about 10 minutes. Check the seasoning.

Heat the oven to 180*

Arrange the sliced aubergine on a sheet pan and drizzle with some olive oil, then sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake 15 minutes until golden brown.

In a bowl mix the chopped basil, breadcrumbs, pine nuts, and parmesan cheese.

In a baking dish pour 1/3 of the tomato sauce, then arrange the aubergine slices. Sprinkle over the chopped tomatoes, the breadcrumb mix and crumbled mozzarella cheese.

Continue layering until the ingredients are finished, end with some of the breadcrumb mixture.

Bake in the oven for 30 minutes.

Serve with a salad and bread.

© Ajith Perera. All rights reserved.