These aubergine stuffed red peppers were inspired by a vegetarian meatball recipe which I found on the net. I tweaked the recipe. The basil was replaced by a handful of fresh origanum. The olives I used had already been marinated in balsamic so I didn't use the balsamic vinegar specified in the recipe. And I left out the lemon rind but added some parmesan cheese.
The meatball mix was a little on the sloppy side so rather than struggle to roll it into balls I decided to use it as a filling for red peppers instead. This was much easier, and the red pepper containers added colour and flavour. I baked them for about 20 minutes in a moderate oven.
Before serving I scattered on more fresh origanum and rested the peppers on a bed of rocket.
This is now one of our favourite vegetarian recipes. I found the original aubergine meatball recipe at :
400g of aubergine (1 large aubergine)
1 small onion ( finely chopped)
3 cloves of garlic ( peeled and sliced)
3 tablespoons of olive oil
Three slices of bread
a handful of freshly picked origanum
1 egg (beaten)
12 kalamata olives marinated in balsamic vinegar (pitted and chopped)
the juice of half a lemon
1/4 cup of finely grated parmesan cheese
a little hot chilli sauce/1 small red seeded chilli pepper
salt and pepper to taste
Cut the aubergine into cubes and fry with the onions and garlic in three tablespoons of olive oil until the aubergine has softened and browned.
Leave to cool down a little and then whizz briefly in a food processor ( it should retain some texture)
Whizz the slices of bread with the origanum until fine crumbs are formed.
Mix the aubergine and breadcrumb mixtures with all the other ingredients.
Taste. You may need to add more seasoning.
Cut 6 small red peppers ( or 4 larger ones) in half horizontally.
Take out the seeds.
Arrange in an ovenproof dish lightly greased/lined with baking paper
Fill each with some of the stuffing.
Bake in a moderate oven for about 20 minutes.
Serve hot with a scattering of more origanum leaves.