Eggplant & Pork Patties - adapted from Stephanie Alexander's Kitchen Garden companion
1 eggplant (about 400g)
200g baby spinach, washed
200g minced pork
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
100g fresh ricotta
1/4 cup grated parmesan
1/2 teaspoon salt
freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup breadcrumbs (extra for crumbing)
olive oil, for frying
1 qty Fast Basic Tomato Sauce (recipe follows)
Heat a barbecue grill plate until hot. Roast eggplant, turning it 2-3 times so it roasts evenly, it will take about 30 minutes fir skin to char and eggplant to feel quite soft. Remove with tongs & cool a little. Peel away charred skin. Halve lengthways & put into a colander resting over a tray to catch any juices. After 10 minutes, wrap eggplant in a clean tea towel and gently squeeze. Chop flesh quite finely & place in a large mixing bowl.
Place spinach in a non stick frypan over medium heat for a few minutes until wilted down (you will not need any oil as the water on the leaves from washing will be sufficient). Place in a colander & press with the back of a spoon to squeeze out as much liquid as possible. Chop finely and add to eggplant.
Add pork, garlic, ricotta, breadcrumbs, parmesan, salt, pepper & egg to eggplant/spinach mixture & mix very well. Cover with glad wrap & refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
Divide mixture into 10 balls & slightly flatten each one. Roll each patty into breadcrumbs. Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large non stick frypan & gently fry each patty for 5 minutes on each side. Add the tomato sauce to the pan & cook for an extra 10 minutes. Tuck in!
Fast Basic Tomato Sauce
1/3 cup extra virgin oliv eoil
1 onion, finely chopped
1 bay leaf
500g ripe tomatos, roughly chopped
2 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
8 sprigs basil
salt & black pepper
Heat oil in a large non-stick frying pan over medium heat, add onion & bay leaf, then cover & cook for 5 minutes or until onion is well softened but hardly coloured. Uncover & add tomato, garlic & herbs. Cook over medium heat, stirring frequently for 10 minutes or until tomato has collapsed. Add salt & pepper to taste. Blend with a bamix to a smooth consistency.