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Jill needs more recipes! This woman is cooking up a storm! Today we’re doing baked eggplant and baked cauliflower dishes. These make great sides. Khadija is a miracle woman who has gotten my husband to not only eat eggplant without complaining, but to actually order it in a restaurant. He likes olives now too!

Baked Cauliflower:

Start by steaming your cauliflower.

Meanwhile, make a roue out of butter, grated fresh garlic, a crumbled boullion cube, salt and pepper.

Add 3 large tablespoonfuls of flour, then stir in milk to make a basic white sauce. Meanwhile, arrange the steamed cauliflower artistically in a glass Pyrex dish. Does it have to be glass Pyrex, you ask? Yes, it does, if you want to be just like me and my stellar Marjane purchases, it does.

Pour white sauce over top. Sprinkle grated cheese (we use Edam–cheapest, most widely available, and delish!) over the top.

I believe real food bloggers have more attractive tea towels in their pictures, but oh well.

Bake in oven till heated through. Turn on broiler for a bit so that the cheese is browned and bubbly. Forget to take picture of finished product. Enjoy the fact that husband and kids are still so traumatized by the thought of cauliflower (perhaps because the kids at Elliot’s school sometimes call him “chouflour” because of all his curls?) that they somehow end up leaving this whole entire pan for you! Yum! No wonder all that jogging isn’t showing tons of results!

Baked Eggplant:

Eggplant is super common and popular here in Morocco. There are two ways to make it. The other way is actually my favorite but I don’t have the recipe yet. This way is pretty darn good though!

Slice eggplant lengthwise. Steam in steamer (do you have one of those colander-like thingys?) with 3 cloves of garlic until all flaccid and nasty-looking.

Meanwhile, chop 2 -3 fresh tomatoes and a bunch of fresh parsley and cilantro.

Add 1 t of pepper, 1 t harissa, 1 t cumin, salt, and the 3 cloves of steamed garlic, sort of mushed with your fingers.

Add some oil. Do not be shy about the oil! None of this modern fat-conscious American namby-pamby worrying about the oil. Add some oil! Relax that wrist as you pour! It will feel good. Live dangerously for once. You can do crunches afterwards to appease your conscience if you must.

Let the tomato mixture cook down.

Meanwhile, arrange the eggplant, artistically of course, in, yes, a Pyrex glass baking dish. Work with me here!

Pour tomato mixture over top. Grate two slices of burned toast over the top. Bake until it is all crispy and spicy and yummy.

It goes well with lamb/prune tagine, as you can see.


December 2009

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