Baked Aubergine Meatballs

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Step 1.

Heat your oven to 200°C.

Step 2.

Finely slice your onion. Dice your aubergines into small chunks. Finely chop your garlic and parsley.

Step 3.

Heat a saute pan over a medium heat with a little olive oil. Add your sliced onion and cook until softened, about 10 mins.

Step 4.

Drain your lentils, then tip them onto a baking tray. Bake for 15 mins until they have dried out slightly.

Step 5.

Add your aubergine chunks to the same pan as your onions with a pinch of salt and a drizzle of olive oil. Fry for 5 mins until totally soft and tender. Tip in half of your garlic and cook for another 2 mins. Allow your aubergines and lentils to cool slightly.

Step 6.

Add your bread to the food processor and whizz to crumbs, then remove 25g to save until later. Tip the aubergines and lentils into your food processor, along with your onions, parmesan, all but a tbsp of your parsley and salt and pepper. Whizz to a paste, then season to taste.

Step 7.

Roll your mixture into 12 equal sized balls.

Step 8.

Place them on a parchment lined baking tray, then drizzle with a little olive oil.

Step 9.

Bake for 40 mins until crisp.

Step 10.

Meanwhile, make your tomato sauce. Heat a little olive oil in a saute pan over medium heat. Add your remaining garlic and chilli flakes, and cook for 1 min. Tip in your tinned tomatoes and add a sprig of basil. Simmer for 25 mins until reduced.

Step 11.

Whizz up with a stick blender if you like it smoother, then season to taste with salt and pepper.

Step 12.

Heat your grill to high.

Step 13.

Mix your remaining 25g of breadcrumbs with chopped parsley.

Step 14.

Pour your sauce into a baking dish. Add your meatballs, then tears over your mozzarella. Grate over a little parmesan and sprinkle on your breadcrumbs, then grill for 5 mins.

Step 15.

Top with basil leaves, then serve!

In partnership with Aldi.

1 Onion
2 Large Aubergines
4 Cloves of Garlic
Handful of Parsley
175g White Bread
200g Tinned Green Lentils
30g Parmesan
1⁄2 Tsp Chilli Flakes
800g Tinned Chopped Tomatoes
150g Mozzarella
Handful of Basil
Salt
Pepper
Olive Oil