Ιμαμ Μπαϊλντί // Imam Bayildi
Imam Baildi means the Imam fainted and according to the legend it was because of the large amount of olive oil his wife used to make it. Despite the funny story, we are thankful to the Greeks of Asia Minor for introducing it to us in the motherland and for us it spells Greek summer all over it. Easy to make with staple pantry ingredients and sooo delicious, it can be served as an entrée or part of a mezze platter. Evoi Evan!
- 4 Eggplants / Aubergines cut in half, flesh cut crisscrossed
- 1 large large onion sliced
- 400 g canned chopped tomatoes or fresh
- Mix of fresh & dry herbs of your choice chopped
- 1/2 tsp cumin
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- A little bit of fresh nutmeg
- 1 cup crumbled Greek feta or Goat's cheese optional
- Start with the Eggplants richly oil them, season well and bake in the oven until soft at 190C.
- Whilst baking the eggplants, sauté the onions in a large frying pan with enough extra virgin olive oil to cover the bottom. Once onions are soft and getting colored, add the tomatoes with the rest of the ingredients, season and cook until liquid of tomatoes has been absorbed, covered with a cartouche (a round piece of baking paper instead of a lid).
- Remove the cooked eggplants from the oven, with a spoon push down the flesh and place over the tomato mixture, top up with the crumbled cheese, drizzle some extra olive oil and return to the oven at 190C for the topping to get colored and for cheese to melt.
- Serve with a nice salad and a lovely crisp red wine.