4 small, or 8 baby aubergines
vegetable oil, for frying
FOR THE FILLING
1 tbsp olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
1 large onion, finely chopped
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1-2 red or green chillies, according to your taste, deseeded and finely chopped
1 tsp sugar
2 tbsp each currants and pine nuts
1 tbsp each ground cinnamon and garam masala
1 tsp ground turmeric
225g/8oz lean minced lamb
small bunch coriander leaves, finely chopped (reserving some to serve)
2 tomatoes, sliced
lemon slices, to serve
Heat oven to 200C/fan 180C/gas 6. Make the filling: Heat the olive oil in a heavy-based pan, add the onions, garlic and chillies and cook, stirring often, until fragrant. Add the sugar, currants and pine nuts, and fry until the onions are golden. Stir in the ground spices, season, turn off the heat and leave to cool.
Tip the lamb into a bowl. Add the cooled onion and spice mixture, then the coriander, and season. using your hands, knead the ingredients together until they are well mixed, then set aside.
Cut the aubergines in half, keeping the stalk intact. Heat a thin layer of vegetable oil in the heavy-based pan. Fry the aubergines until they are soft and golden brown all over, about 6-8 mins. Remove with a slotted spoon and place them side-by-side in a baking dish. using a sharp knife, slit each one lengthways down the middle to form a pocket – don’t cut through the ends or the base. Stuff the lamb filling into each one and place 2-3 slices tomato on top of each one. you can prepare the stuffed aubergines to this stage and chill before cooking, up to a day ahead.
Drizzle a little olive oil over the top, cover the dish with foil and bake for about 40 mins, or until cooked through. Remove from oven and discard foil. Cook again, uncovered, for 10 mins until the tomato has lightly caramelised. To serve, sprinkle a little chopped coriander over the top and squeeze over lemon slices.