Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Ethiopian Stuffed Eggplant

After I made this recipe for "Ethiopian Sweet Potato and Lentils," I began to apply the base ingredients to many different combinations by replacing the sweet potato with whatever vegetables I had.  So tonight I made it with eggplant and zucchini and decided to use it as a filling to stuff the eggplant shells.

This recipe for the Ethiopian spices will make almost three times what you need for the recipe, but I like to make it in bulk to keep around for other uses:
  • 4 1/2 tsp red chili flakes
  • 1 tsp cumin (original recipe calls for fenugreek, but this is a good replacement) 
  • 1 tsp tumeric
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3 tbsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon 
  • 1/2 tsp allspice 
  • 1 tsp coriander
  • 1/4 tsp ground clove
  • 1 tsp black pepper
Base ingredients:
  • 1 finely chopped onion
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1-2 diced tomatoes 
  • 1 tsp ground fresh ginger (optional)
  • 1 cup french lentils (if you wanted more of an Indian dal consistency, use red or yellow lentils)
  • 4 cups stock
Additional vegetables:
  • 1 zucchini, large dice
  • 1 eggplant, gutted
  • 1 large can of whole, stewed tomatoes 

Gut your eggplant and lightly oil/salt the shells.  Bake them in a 350 degree oven until they brown a little and get a little soft.  Remove them to cool while the filling cooks.
Start the filling by heating 1-2 tbsp of olive oil in a large pot.  Add the chopped onion and cook for about 4 minutes.  Add the garlic and ginger and cook for another minute.  Stir 1-2 tbsp of the spice mix (should get pasty and smell good), then the diced tomato.  Cook a few minutes until the flavors mingle and it all comes together.
Add your additional fresh vegetables, salt, and pepper, and cook for another few minutes until everything softens.
Pour in 4 cups of stock and the lentils.  Bring to a simmer then partially cover for 20-25 minutes until the lentils are soft and have absorbed the amount of liquid you want.  Tear apart the whole tomatoes and stir them in, letting it cook a little longer to reach the right consistency.   It will thicken more as it cools, especially if you reheat it tomorrow.
Fill the eggplant shells (there should be filling leftover for lunch tomorrow) and place in the oven until shells are fully cooked.


  1. I love the idea of using the mix to stuff vegetables! I still have a jar of the Berbere spice mix so will definitely make extra of the stew next time. I love having leftovers to use the next day! Thanks for the inspiration and the link!!

    1. Thank you for the original inspiration! I loved your sweet potato version so much that I've adapted it multiple times for whatever veggies are lying around...and that Berbere spice mix has been great in many other dishes, as well.