In this delicious dish, grilled slices of eggplant and zucchini are layered with a rich tomato sauce and cumin-flavoured yogurt, then baked. Thick slices of multigrain bread and a crisp green salad are perfect accompaniments.
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 red onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 can (415 g) no-salt-added chopped tomatoes
2 teaspoons sundried tomato paste
1/2 cup dry red wine
1 bay leaf
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
pepper to taste
3 small eggplants, about 700 g in total, cut into 1 cm slices
3 zucchinis, about 450 g in total, thinly sliced
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
400 g natural low-fat yogurt
2 eggs, beaten
30 g freshly grated Parmesan cheese
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Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a saucepan, add the onion and cook for about 8 minutes or until softened. Add the garlic and cook for a further minute, stirring. Stir in the chopped tomatoes with their juice, the tomato paste, wine and bay leaf. Cover and simmer gently for 10 minutes.
Uncover the pan and let the sauce bubble for a further 10 minutes or until thickened, stirring occasionally. Remove the bay leaf. Stir in the parsley and pepper.
While the sauce is simmering, preheat the grill to medium. Lightly brush the eggplant and zucchini slices with the remaining 2 tablespoons oil. Cook under the grill, in batches, for 3–4 minutes on each side or until browned and very tender.
Preheat the oven to 180ºC. Stir the cumin into half of the yogurt. Arrange one-third of the eggplant slices, in one layer, in a large ovenproof dish with a capacity of about 2.5 litres. Spoon over half of the tomato sauce. Arrange half of the zucchini slices on top, in one layer, then drizzle with half of the cumin-flavoured yogurt. Repeat the layers, then finish with a layer of the remaining eggplant slices.
Mix the remaining 200 g yogurt with the beaten eggs and half of the Parmesan cheese. Spoon the yogurt mixture over the top layer of eggplant, spreading with the back of the spoon to cover evenly. Sprinkle with the remaining Parmesan cheese.
Bake for 40–45 minutes or until the top is lightly browned and set, and the sauce is bubbling. Serve hot, in the baking dish.
The normal digestive tract flora can be upset by antibiotics, stress and poor diet. Including yogurt in the diet helps to maintain the ‘good’ bacteria in the gut and prevent the growth of less desirable bacteria.