Brinjal and mushroom lasagne

Preparation time : 15-20 min Cooking time : 40 min Servings : 4-6
  • ½ onion, peeled
  • 5 black peppercorns
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 500 ml milk
  • 30 g butter
  • 45 ml white bread flour
  • 5 ml nutmeg
  • 125 ml mature cheddar cheese, grated
  • 2 punnets chopped mixed mushrooms
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 red pepper, chopped (optional)
  • 30 ml butter
  • 4-6 sun-dried tomatoes in vinaigrette, chopped
  • generous handful of fresh basil, chopped
  • 4 medium brinjals, thinly sliced and salted
  • olive oil
  • grated cheddar or pecorino cheese for sprinkling

Preheat the oven to 180°C. Grease an oven-proof dish with non-stick spray.

1. White sauce: Heat the onion, peppercorns, bay leaves and milk to just below the boil. Remove from the heat and cool. Strain and discard the solids.

2. In a separate saucepan melt the butter, then stir in the flour to form a smooth paste. Add the milk slowly, stirring continuously while bringing to the boil. Season with the nutmeg then add the cheese. Set aside.

3. Mushrooms: Fry the mushrooms, garlic and pepper (if using) in the butter until soft. Add the sun-dried tomatoes and basil.

4. To finish: Rinse the salt off the brinjals and pat dry. Arrange on a baking sheet and sprinkle oil over. Bake until soft but not brown or crispy.

5. Arrange a layer of brinjals in the ovenproof dish, then a layer of mushrooms, followed by white sauce. Repeat until all the ingredients have been used, ending with white sauce.

6. Sprinkle the cheese over and bake for 20-30 minutes or until the cheese has melted. Serve with a garden salad