Grilled Aubergine with Cheese & Black Olives
This is a simple but distinctive side dish that’s perfect with roast meats or grilled chops – or even crusty Italian bread. The crispy fried bacon, or pancetta, contrasts with velvety soft leeks to create something that makes the plainest meal a little bit special.
- 2 large aubergines
- 40 g (1½oz) Bertolli with Butter
- 85 g (3oz) fresh breadcrumbs (preferably made with Italian style bread such as ciabatta)
- 1 medium tomato, finely chopped
- 25 g (1oz) pitted black olives, finely chopped
- About 20 large fresh basil leaves roughly torn
- 115 g (4oz) grated milld Italian cheese, such as fontina or mozzarella
- salt and black pepper
- fresh basil and salad leaves, to garnish
- Cut the aubergines crossways into slices about 2cm (¾ inch) thick. Melt the Bertolli with Butter and lightly brush some on to each side of the aubergine slices. Grill until golden brown on both sides.
- Meanwhile, mix the breadcrumbs with the tomato, olives, basil and half of the cheese. Stir in the remaining melted Bertolli with Butter and season with salt and pepper. Pile the breadcrumb mixture on to the browned aubergine slices and scatter the remaining cheese over the top.
- Cook under a medium-hot grill for 5-10 minutes or until the cheese has melted and is golden brown on top.
- Serve hot or at room temperature, garnished with basil and salad leaves.