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Friday, September 20, 2013

CUAJADERA WITH 15TH CENTURY RECIPE FOR EGGPLANT STUFFING

Slicing and Salting Eggplant
Photo by: Lord-Williams
1. a woman who peddled cuajadas (junket or rennet custard) in the streets. 2. a glazed earthenware bowl with a wide bottom for making cuajado (cheese and egg dish). 3. iron pot with a lid on which coals were placed to cook cuajados when there was no oven in the kitchen. [ES: RAE. 2001; Nola. 1989:xli-9; Nola/Pérez.1994:193]

EGGPLANT STUFFING ADAPTED FROM NOLA’S  xli-1 CAZUELA MOJI[1]




Frying Eggplant Pulp
Photo by: Lord-Williams
Ingredients

1 lb or 2 medium to large eggplants
1 tsp salt
¼ c and 1 tbsp virgin olive oil
1 c breadcrumbs
1 c grated cheese
½ tsp coriander
½ tsp caraway
1 tsp pepper
1 tsp cloves
1 scraping ginger
4 eggs beaten
saffron

garnish:
a drizzle honey
duke’s powder: (1 pinch of cloves, 1 ginger scraping, 1 tbsp sugar and ½ tsp cinnamon)

An Excellent First Course or Side Dish to Accompany Meat
Photo by: Lord-Williams
Preparation

Peel and slice eggplants in half. Boil in salted water 10 minutes. When soft, drain and scoop out the pulp and ring out the water by squeezing them in a coarse cloth and letting them drain on paper towels. Dice into 1” cubes. Discard the skins.

Heat a frying pan and add ¼ c oil, Fry the pulp. Add half the breadcrumbs and cheese. Stir continually for a few minutes.  Add coriander, caraway and ginger and half the pepper and cloves. Stir until all is well mixed. Add 2 eggs. Stir constantly until eggs coagulate and remove from heat.

IF USING AN OVEN PREHEAT TO 375ºF /190ºC

Pour this mixture into an ovenproof dish or a cuajadera, an iron pot on which burning coals will be placed on top of the lid.

Put 1 tbsp oil in a bowl. Add the other half of the beaten eggs, pepper and cloves and the saffron, the other half of the breadcrumbs and grated cheese. Mix well. Spread this mixture over the eggplant mixture to make a topping. Place this in the oven or in a cuajadera.  Cook 20 minutes covered or until the eggs have set.

Remove from heat. Drizzle with honey and sprinkle with duke’s powder.

Note: Instead of eggplants, this recipe can be made with chard or carrots.


[1] Moji is from the Hispano-Arabic muḥší and this is from Classical Arabic.maḥšū, meaning stuffing. The dish does taste like eggplant stuffing.

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