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Mushroom stuffed eggplant baked in tomato sauce - a vegetarian "sheikh el mahshi"

The authentic version of this dish consists of either eggplant or zucchini stuffed in meat and pine nuts. In this recipe I swap the meat and pine nuts for mushrooms and walnuts. It's a vegetarian twist on the original recipe and still provides the same earthy and warm flavours.

This recipe consists of two parts; par-baking the eggplant and preparing the stuffing and sauce; then stuffing the eggplant and baking it in the sauce. It's simple in that you only need a few spices, whole eggplants and tinned cherry tomatoes/passata. The mushroom and walnut stuffing is cooked in a pan and the use of spices and onions give it the rich and earthy flavour you would get from a mince meat stuffing.

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