Wednesday, 14 October 2015

African Aubergine Coconut Cassoulet

There are no fiery or smoky chillies in this African Aubergine Coconut Cassoulet , but it is immensely flavourful.  
The recipe for African Cassoulet is originally made with Boerewors which are South African sausages, I liked the sound of the flavour's in the rich ochre coloured sauce, so decided to make a vegetarian version which also happens to be suitable for vegans.  In place of the Boerewors I sliced some aubergines length ways in a manner to mimic the look of the Boerewors.   


I really wanted this Cassoulet to have flavours reminisce of Boerewors, so I did a little research and learned that spices such as allspice, black pepper, coriander, cloves and nutmeg are used for spicing up the Boerewors , so I have incorporated these spices into the Cassoulet. I also read something about there being grape vinegar, so decided to throw in some grape-like cherry tomatoes (from the greenhouse of course) towards the end for their natural sweet sharp zingness. 
As I said earlier, this is a really really rich and flavourful dish.  We had it over two days, first with red Camargue rice and Basmati rice. And it made a nice change from chilli spiked food. I am sharing this with Meat Free Mondays hosted by Tinned Tomatoes.

African Aubergine Coconut Cassoulet 
Serves 6
Ingredients
2 large aubergines. top and bottom ends removed, then slice in half. then quartered length ways to look like long sausages
2 tablespoon sunflower oil

2 tablespoon sunflower oil
1 large onion, minced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon ground coriander
Good Pinch of ground cloves
Scratch grating of fresh nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
Sea salt to taste 
1 x 400g tinned tomatoes, crushed
1x 400ml coconut milk
8 - 12 cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
1 x 400g tinned mixed beans, though I used kidney beans
Method
Remove the butt ends and calyx from the aubergines, then cut in half.  Then quarter the halves, then slice through the quartered aubergines to create two pieces, so all together you should have 16 pieces from each aubergine.  Transfer to a tray, coat with olive oil and then bake in a preheated oven gas mark 5/200oc for 15 - 20 minutes, or until beginning to soften. Turn off the heat.
Heat the oil, then stir in the onions and soften when it begins to go translucent, stir in the garlic and cook for a few minutes, then stir in the spices. Cook for a few minutes, before stirring in the tinned tomatoes, crushed.  Cook on medium heat, crushing the tomatoes with the back of the spoon or a masher until it is well blended , then stir in the coconut milk and simmer for 10 minutes, before stirring in the beans, cherry tomatoes and the roasted aubergines and . Simmer for 5 minutes, being careful no to to damage the aubergines too much, its important that they keep their shape. 
Serve immediately with rice of your choice. 
Adapted and veganized from The African Chef

18 comments:

  1. I think the French would dispute the description of "Cassoulet"! An interesting dish nonetheless...

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    1. I hear you Mark, but Plenty of celebrity chefs, or food writers endorsed by high profile celebrity chefs put their own twist on a vegetarian Cassoulet (as well as other recipes), so what's wrong when a little known blogger does it. please do check out the African Chefs version too,

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  2. Aubergines are such a spectacular vegetable - this looks like a great meal - esp when you say it is not fiery - and I love nutmeg in a stew

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    1. Thanks Johanna, I've made cassoulet before more close to the French version http://allotment2kitchen.blogspot.co.uk/2011/01/leek-and-butter-bean-cassoulet.html, but I do remember you commenting on that and sharing yours with aubergines. Do you remember?
      Yes, this one is not spicy at all, not in that way :0

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  3. that looks rather rich and creamy and gorgeous. I love the idea of the coconut and the aubergine together, divine!

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    1. Thank you Dom. It is very creamy. It works

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  4. Looks delicious - now that the cool weather has finally arrived, I'm looking to get more stews and soups on the stove. And I know what you mean - I love spicy food, but it's nice to take a break every once in a while.

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    1. Thanks Margaret.
      Me too, looking forward to stews, soups and pies!
      While I was in France, I did not have any spice food - missed it, but it was a nice change.

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  5. Aubergine and tomatoes together are a wonderful combination. I like your take on cassoulet - it looks amazingly creamy and spicy too!

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    1. Thank you so much Joey, it was rather delicious.

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  6. I made your delicious stew with the last of my home grown aubergines. there were not big anymore but 2 days ago, I had the last 5 ones' A very tasty dish! thanks! x

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    1. Thank you Sophie, I am glad you liked it, Will you be sharing it on your blog?

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    2. Sorry, I didn't take any pictures! x

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  7. This looks so good for an autumn dinner! I love aubergine but never manage to cook it properly myself. The skins are always still tough! Have bookmarked this recipe and hope it will be my breakthrough. Thanks for posting it :-)

    Stephanie Jane

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    1. Thank you so much Stephanie, it was a lovely change for us from spicy food - we really really liked it. I roasted the aubergines in the oven with the skin, so recommend that to make it tender. If you do make, do hope you like.
      Kind wishes

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