- 1 large onion, chopped
- 3 tablespoons sunflower oil
- 2 pounds boned leg or neck fillet of lamb
- 1 pound tomatoes, peeled and chopped
- 1 teaspoon sugar, or to taste
- salt and black pepper
- 3 pounds eggplants
- ¬ĺ stick (6 tablespoons) butter
- 3 tablespoons flour
- 2¬ľ cups milk
- good pinch of nutmeg
- ¬Ĺ cup grated cheese
In Turkey, they use mature kaŇüsar, a hard yellow cheese, or Gruy√®re¬† in¬† the¬† sauce,¬† but mature¬† Cheddar¬† can¬† be¬† used¬† too. Serve it with rice pilaf.
- For¬† the¬† stew,¬† fry¬† the onion¬† in¬† the oil until¬† soft. Cut¬† the meat¬† into 1-inch¬† cubes, add¬† them¬† to¬† the pan, and¬† cook, turning¬† to¬† brown¬† lightly¬† all¬† over.¬† Add¬† the¬† tomatoes, sugar,¬† salt,¬† and¬† pepper.¬† Cover with water¬† and¬† simmer, with the lid on, for 1 hour, until the meat is very tender, adding¬† water¬† if¬† it¬† becomes¬† dry,¬† but¬† letting¬† the¬† sauce reduce at the end.
- For¬† the¬† eggplant¬† sauce,¬† prick¬† the¬† eggplants¬† with¬† a pointed knife to prevent them from bursting in the oven. Place them on a large piece of foil on a baking sheet and roast them in a hot oven preheated to 475¬įF for about 45 to 55 minutes, or until they feel very soft when you press them¬† and¬† the¬† skins¬† are wrinkled. When¬† cool¬† enough¬† to handle,¬† peel¬† and¬† drop¬† them¬† into¬† a¬† strainer¬† or¬† colander with¬† small¬† holes.¬† Press¬† out¬† as¬† much¬† of¬† the¬† water¬† and juices¬† as¬† possible.¬† Still¬† in¬† the¬† colander,¬† chop¬† the¬† flesh with¬† a¬† pointed¬† knife,¬† then mash¬† it¬† into¬† a¬† pur√©e with¬† a fork or wooden¬† spoon,¬† letting¬† the¬† juices escape¬† through the holes.
- Make¬† a¬† b√©chamel¬† sauce¬† by¬† melting¬† the¬† butter¬† in¬† a saucepan, add the flour, and stir over low heat for about 2 minutes, until¬† it¬† is well blended. Take¬† the pan off¬† the heat¬† and¬† add¬† the milk¬† gradually,¬† beating¬† vigorously¬† all the¬† time¬† to¬† avoid¬† lumps¬† forming. Add¬† salt¬† and nutmeg, and cook over¬† low heat,¬† stirring constantly¬† for about 15 minutes, until the sauce thickens.
- Off the heat, mix the eggplant pur√©e into the b√©chamel sauce,¬† then return¬† to¬† the heat, beating vigorously until¬† it is well¬† blended.¬† Add¬† the¬† grated¬† cheese¬† and¬† stir¬† until¬† it has melted. Add a little salt if necessary.
- Serve¬† the meat¬† stew¬† in¬† a wide¬† shallow¬† dish with¬† the eggplant sauce in a circle around it.