This feeds a crowd, and a happy crowd that would be! This is so Moorish and leftovers are even more delicious. This is why when I make this dish I make it so big, it means hopefully I have some left for lunch or dinner the next day. It great served stuffed in pitta with salad, and rice works very too. I use jarred chickpea here and if you get them they very delicious, But I have made it with tinned and it’s equally as yummy. Just use 3 tins. I have also made this using harissa pesto, which was delish too
6 aubergines chopped into 2 inch chunks
2 660g jars chickpeas drained and rinsed
800g medium vine tomatoes quartered
1 tbsp. cumin seeds
6 garlic coves
750ml vegetable stock
Few thyme sprigs
100g jar of rose Harissa (or Harissa pesto for a milder flavour)
2 small preserved lemons finely diced soft inside removed
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
Sat and pepper
Small bunch flat leaf parsley
1 cup toasted walnuts
Pre heat the oven to 180°C
In a large baking tray or dish, add the aubergine chunks and quartered tomatoes, drizzle over about ¼ cup of light oil, sprinkle with cumin seeds and add the garlic cloves, kept whole and just given a bash.
Place in the oven for about 30-45minutes, you want the aubergine to be soft and everything beginning to char a little. If it is catching too much turn down the temp to 160°C.
In a large pan or casserole dish, add the vegetable stock, chickpeas and thyme sprigs. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a low simmer, stirring occasionally. The stock will reduce a little.
When the aubergine and tomatoes are ready, remove from the oven and locate the garlic cloves. With a fork remove the skins and squash the cloves into a paste and stir into the now soft vegetables.
Add all of this to your pan of chickpeas including any juices, stir to combine.
Add the preserved lemon, and harissa paste. Please add the Harissa one tablespoon at a time. They vary in strength and you do not want it to be over powering. I think you will use most of a jar but keep stirring and tasting after each addition.
Add in the extra virgin olive oil and taste for seasoning, it will require some salt and a good grind of black pepper. Give everything a gentle stir and check again for seasoning, allow it to cook for about another 15minutes on a low heat for the flavours to mingle together. If youn feel its not loose enough add little more vegetable stock or water.
When you are ready to serve warm up your flatbreads, try to fish out the thyme springs and serve the stew in bowls with chopped toasted walnuts, pomegranate seeds and chopped flat leaf parsley.