So this evening I’m attempting a recipe from The Food of France: a journey for food lovers, petit farcis (pg 48).
This is definitely a dish that requires a bit of prep, but based on the
smell from the kitchen right now I think the effort will be worth it. I
ended up neglecting one ingredient unfortunately, as I managed to
completely forget I needed a couple of tomatoes. I’m hoping my ‘hack’
works, and will compare that against a full on effort down the road.
2 small eggplants (aubergines) halved lengthwise
2 small zucchini (courgettes) halved lengthwise
2 small red capsicums (peppers) halved lengthwise and seeded
4 tablespoons olive oil
2 red onions, chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed
250g (9 oz) minced (ground) pork
250g (9 oz) minced (ground) veal
50g (1 3/4 oz)tomato paste (puree)
80ml (1/3 cup) white wine
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
50g (1/2 cup) grated Parmesan cheese
80g (1 cup) fresh breadcrumbs
Preheat the oven to 180C (350F/Gas 4)
Grase a large roasting pan tin with oil. Use a spoon to hollow out the
centres of the eggplants and zucchini, leaving a border around the edge.
Chop the flesh finely.
Cut the tops from the tomatoes (don’t throw away the tops). Use a spoon
to hollow out the centres, catching the juice in a bowl, and chop the
flesh roughly. Arrange the vegetables, including the red capsicum, in
the roasting tin. Brush the edges of the eggplants and zucchini with a
little of the oil. Pour 125ml (1/2 cup) water into the roasting tin.
Heat half the oil in a large frying pan. Cook the onion and garlic for
3 minutes, or until they have softened. Add the pork and veal and stir
for 5 minutes until the meat browns, breaking any lumps with the back of
a fork. Add the chopped eggplant and zucchini and cook for a further 3
minutes. Add the tomato pulp and juice, tomato paste and wine. Cook,
stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes.
Remove the frying pan from the heat and stir in the parsley, Parmesan
and breadcrumbs. Season well with salt and pepper. Spoon the mixture
into the vegetables. Place the tops back on the tomatoes. Sprinkle the
vegetables with the remaining oil and bake for 45 minutes, or until the
vegetables are tender.
I actually added in a couple of leaves of finely chopped freshly picked
basil while browning the veal and pork. As for the forgotten tomatoes,
I used a bit more tomato paste and added a bit of water. I’d also used
double the amount of veal The other change was using fresh grated Asiago rather than Parmesan.
It’s currently in the oven smelling frickin wonderful.