London Pride with Eggplant Ragu and Soft Polenta
( SERVES 6 )
This eggplant ragu is really flavoursome and is wonderful with soft polenta and sausages.
|6||London Pride sausages|
|2 Tbsp||Rice bran oil|
|500 g||Instant polenta, (fine italian)|
|2 Ltr||Milk, or water or 50/50|
|¾ cup||Olive oil|
|2||White onions, medium dice|
|4 cloves||Garlic, medium dice|
|3 sprigs||Fresh thyme|
|1 stalk||Fresh rosemary|
|½ tsp||Ground cumin|
|1 tsp||Fennel seeds|
|¼ tsp||Ground allspice|
|¼ tsp||Chilli flakes|
|500 ml||Italian tomato Passata|
|1 Tbsp||Brown sugar|
|1 tsp||Chopped parsley, (fresh)|
|50 g||Shaved parmesan|
- Begin by salting the eggplants to omit bitter juices. Cut the top off the eggplant and then cut through from top to bottom into half inch wide slices. Cut those slices lengthways into 3 strips. Cut the strips across on a diagonal about an inch or so wide. Take a large baking tray and spread the cut eggplant out evenly and sprinkle with table salt, toss well together. Leave for 15 mins till you start to see little beads of water appearing on the flesh. Once this happens wipe the beads and access salt off with a paper towel. Remove from tray and set aside.
- In a large fry pan over medium heat add ¼ cup of olive oil, onions and garlic and cook for 5-10 mins being careful not to brown. Add the eggplant and the remaining ½ cup of olive oil. Gently cook for a further 20 mins till the eggplant is soft.
- Add the thyme, rosemary, cumin, fennel seeds, allspice and chilli flakes and stir through for 2 mins.
- Now pour in the Passata and bring up to a gentle simmer. Stir in the water and brown sugar and allow it to simmer for 5 mins. Add the olives, adjust the seasoning and set aside to keep warm.
- In a large fry pan add 2 tbsp rice bran oil and gently fry off the London Pride sausages till golden and cooked thoroughly.
- As the sausages cook bring the milk/water and a good pinch of salt up to the boil in a large pot. Stirring continuously with one hand very slowly pour the polenta into the boiling liquid with the other. Turn the heat down to medium and keep stirring for 2-3 mins until the polenta starts to thicken then add in the butter and stir through off the heat.
- On a large platter or in individual bowls pile up the polenta and top with eggplant ragu and sausages. To serve, sprinkle with Italian parsley and shaved parmesan.