I like simple seasonal food that is efficient to prepare - as I rarely seem to have much time on my hands. I cooked the following dish inside an hour, but that included firing up my brick oven. I would say that you can knock this up yourself in about 45 minutes. If you can’t find baby round courgettes and baby aubergines use large ones and cut into large chunks.
• 20 small round Courgette de Nice cut into chunks
• 10 baby aubergines cut into big, meaty chunks
• Olive oil
• Flaky sea salt
• 6 large, ripe vine tomatoes, roughly chopped
• 150ml rich chicken stock
(or veggie stock if you prefer)
• 60g tomato paste
• A teaspoon of veggie
• Single cream
• A pinch of saffron
• Salt and pepper
• 100g of buffalo mozzarella
• Flat leaf parsley
Heat the oven to 220oc
Place the courgettes and aubergines onto an oven tray and cover liberally with olive oil and a little salt. Bake for 20-25 minutes until the aubergines are soft
While the vegetables are baking, boil the vine tomatoes, chicken stock, tomato paste and veggie bouillon powder in a saucepan until reduced by half, then pass through a conical sieve or strainer, leaving the skins and seeds behind.
Return the sauce to a clean saucepan, add the saffron and continue to boil until it is of a ‘saucy’ consistency, then pour in the cream and add seasoning.
Take your vegetables out of the oven and serve with the saffron sauce, broken mozzarella and a small handful of roughly chopped flat leaf parsley.
This dish is great when served with a warm doorstep of sourdough bread.