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  • Writer's pictureNava

Eggplant pastry slice


 

Hi all,

Happy belated mothers day.  I was away for mothers day. I went to Melbourne to celebrate my  gorgeous sisterin laws 70th and I have yet to celebrate mine.  I hope all you mums/carers had a wonderful day with your loved ones.

 

In the meantime allow me to introduce you to an irresistible delight to tantalise your taste buds: the delectable eggplant pastry slice. Ideal for brunch, this dish combines culinary grace with mouth watering flavour.

Imagine biting into a perfectly crispy pastry, enveloping layers of tender eggplant, infused with the aromatic essence of garlic, olive oil, and parsley. Each slice is then lavishly layered with an assortment of cheeses, offering a rich, creamy contrast to the savory vegetable base. Topping it all off, are vibrant cherry tomatoes bursting with a sweet, tangy and flavourful punch. This eggplant pastry slice my friends is a must.



Tips for Best Results

1.     Adjusting Oven Temperatures: Not all ovens are created equal. The temperatures provided work well for me, with my oven baking cakes at 180°C even when the recipe suggests 160°C, and roasting vegetables and puff pastries at 200°C. If you have a particularly hot oven, you may need to reduce the temperature to avoid overcooking.

2.     Managing Eggplant Grease: I only brush one side of the eggplant with oil. When I brushed both sides in previous experiments, the eggplant turned out too greasy. However, if you prefer a richer, oilier eggplant, feel free to brush both sides, but you will need more oil.

3.     Pastry Preparation: When preparing the pastry, only prick the inner rectangle with a fork, not the border. This prevents the center from puffing up, keeping it thin and crispy, while allowing the border to rise and create a lovely, high edge around the eggplant layer.

 


Ingredients

For the Pastry

  • 3 sheets puff pastry, thawed but still firm

  • 1 egg, for egg wash


For the Cheese Layer

  • 100g Mozzarella

  • 30g Parmesan or Pecorino cheese (for a sharper taste)


For the Eggplant Layer

  • 2 medium-sized eggplants

  • 1/3 cup olive oil

  • 1 tablespoon dried parsley

  • 6 cloves garlic, crushed

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt


For the Feta Mixture

  • 80g marinated Persian feta

  • 1 teaspoon feta marinade

  • 1/2 teaspoon Italian herb mix

 

For the Cherry Tomatoes

  • 250g cherry tomatoes

  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed (optional)

  • 30g grated Parmesan or Pecorino cheese (for a sharper taste)

  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon and pepper spice blend

  • 1/2 teaspoon dried parsley

  • 1 heaped teaspoon Italian herb mix

 

 Method for Eggplant Layer

In a bowl, mix 1/3 cup olive oil, 6 cloves of crushed garlic, and 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Set aside.

Method for Cherry Tomatoes

In a separate bowl, marinate the cherry tomatoes with 2 cloves of crushed garlic, lemon and pepper spice blend, dried parsley, and Italian herb mix.

Method for Persian Feta

In a third bowl, mix 80g of Persian feta with 1 teaspoon of the feta marinade and 1/2 teaspoon of Italian herb mix. Set aside.

Preparation

Preheat the oven to 200°C and line two baking trays with baking paper (see note 1).


Step 1: Prepare the Eggplants

  1. Slice the eggplants thinly, discarding the first and last slices.

  2. Place the sliced eggplants of the prepared baking trays and brush them with the olive oil mixture. (see note 2)

  3. Roast in the oven for 15 minutes until almost cooked through.

  4. Remove from the oven and set aside, leaving the oven on.

Step 2: Prepare the Pastry

  1. Line a 35/38 x 23cm baking tray with baking paper and grease liberally with oil.

  2. Cut the pastry sheets to fit your tray (see reel). Create a border by cutting strips of puff pastry; I used two layers of pastry strips for a thicker border.

  3. Using a fork, prick the inside of the pastry, leaving the border unpricked (see note 3).

  4. Crack an egg into a small bowl and whisk with a fork.

  5. Brush the pastry, including the border, with the egg wash and bake for about 15 minutes or until golden in colour. Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly before assembling.

Assembling the Pastry Step 1: Prepare the Eggplants

  1. Slice the eggplants thinly, discarding the first and last slices.

  2. Place the sliced eggplants of the prepared baking trays and brush them with the olive oil mixture. (see note 2)

  3. Roast in the oven for 15 minutes until almost cooked through.

  4. Remove from the oven and set aside, leaving the oven on.

Step 2: Prepare the Pastry

  1. Line a 35/38 x 23cm baking tray with baking paper and grease liberally with oil.

  2. Cut the pastry sheets to fit your tray (see reel). Create a border by cutting strips of puff pastry; I used two layers of pastry strips for a thicker border.

  3. Using a fork, prick the inside of the pastry, leaving the border unpricked (see note 3).

  4. Crack an egg into a small bowl and whisk with a fork.

  5. Brush the pastry, including the border, with the egg wash and bake for about 15 minutes or until golden in colour. Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly before assembling.



Assembling the Pastry

Layer 1. eggplant

Place the eggplants within the pastry border, overlapping them. If you have more eggplant then you can fit in one layer, create a second layer for extra flavour.

Layer 2. Parmesan or Pecorino

Sprinkle grated Parmesan or Pecorino cheese evenly over the eggplants.

Layer 3.Fetta mixture

Dollop small amounts of the feta mixture over the eggplants (see reel).

Layer 4. Mozzarella cheese

Slice the mozzarella cheese and distribute it evenly over the eggplants.

Layer 5. Cherry tomatoes

1.     Add grated Parmesan or Pecorino cheese to the cherry tomato bowl and mix.

2.     Place the cherry tomatoes on top of the mozzarella layer.

3.     Place the assembled pastry back in the oven and bake until the border is golden brown and the mozzarella cheese has completely melted. Aprox 15-20 minutes





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