Ehud here, and I’m excited to share my recipe for an Egyptian Eggplant Dish, also known as Masaa’a. As an Israeli chef, I’ve developed a deep appreciation for Middle Eastern cuisine, with its bold flavors and delectable spices. This eggplant dish is a traditional Egyptian recipe that just bursts with flavor.
The dish masaa’a recipe features fried eggplant immersed in a tomato-based sauce with chickpeas, potatoes, onion, and green bell pepper. The aroma is captivating, the flavor is addictive, and the texture is luscious. If you’re looking for an easy-to-follow yet impressive recipe that will make you feel like you’re dining on the streets of Cairo, this dish is perfect!
It’s an excellent choice if you’re trying to eat healthier, but still want bold flavor. The eggplants are roasted to perfection, allowing them to soak up all the spices in the dish without getting too heavy or greasy. And believe me when I say this – your kitchen will smell divine while preparing it!
So, take a culinary journey with me as we explore the wonderful world of Egyptian food and whip up this mouth-watering masaa’a recipe together. Are you ready for an adventure in the kitchen? Then let’s get cooking!
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
Get ready to fall in love with this eggplant dish! If you’re a fan of Middle Eastern cuisine or are on the hunt for a new recipe to add to your cooking repertoire, then this Egyptian Eggplant Dish (Masaa’a) is perfect for you.
First off, it’s deliciously spiced with cumin, mustard, pepper and salt that will tantalize your taste buds. And who doesn’t love tomato sauce? Along with onion and garlic cloves, the tomato sauce brings together all the flavors of the dish in a rich and savory way. And the chickpeas and potatoes deliver a hearty texture that will leave you feeling satisfied.
But what really makes this dish stand out is the star ingredient – eggplant. The eggplant is thinly sliced and fried until golden perfection before being mixed with the tomato sauce. This means that every bite of the dish is filled with deliciously chewy yet crispy eggplants that will make you want to lick your plate clean.
And if you need more persuasion, this Masaa’a recipe is also incredibly versatile. You can easily swap out some of the ingredients or add in some more of your favorite spices to suit your personal taste preferences. Plus it’s a great option for anyone looking for meatless meals or who wants to switch things up from their traditional eggplant parmesan recipe.
The bottom line is, whether you’re a carnivore or vegetarian or just someone who loves good food, this Egyptian Eggplant Dish (Masaa’a) recipe will not disappoint. So go ahead and give it a try – I dare you not to love it!
Here are the ingredients you’ll need to make this delicious Egyptian Eggplant Dish (Masaa’a):
- 2 large eggplants, sliced into thick rounds
- 1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil
- 1 Onion, thinly sliced
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 green bell pepper, diced
- 6 small potatoes, peeled and diced into small cubes
- 14-ounce can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 1 can tomato sauce (15 oz)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon mustard
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
Make sure to have all the ingredients on hand before starting to cook.
The Recipe How-To
Now, let’s get right to the heart of this dish – the recipe how-to. This Egyptian Eggplant Dish (Masaa’a) is a fairly simple yet delicious meal that can feed your loved ones with limited effort.
Before we jump into the recipe, there are some things that you need to prepare beforehand. Firstly, preheat your oven to 400°F. Then, chop one onion finely and add it to a large skillet along with 4 minced garlic cloves and 1 diced green bell pepper. Sauté for a few minutes with olive oil until they are soft.
Preparing the Eggplants
Note: This recipe requires two large eggplants.
The next step is frying the eggplant slices. Cut your two large eggplants into thick slices (1 cm). The key here is to salt them well and then let them sit for 10 minutes or so to get rid of any excess moisture. Slide your eggplant slices onto your fryer basket or pan, fry them until golden, then set aside.
Making the Tomato Sauce
In a mixing bowl, combine one can of tomato sauce (8 oz) with 1 tsp pepper, 1 tsp cumin, and 1 tsp mustard.
Combine and bake
Mix your sautéed veggies with the tomato sauce and add in the eggplant slices. Gently coat all parts of the eggplant with this mixture and spreading everything around in an even manner.
Next up – the final baking! Cover all mixture dish with foil, then bake for approximately 30-35 minutes in a preheated oven. Finally, remove from oven; take off your foil cover made before and cook again uncovered until it browns slightly on top.
That’s it – you’ve done it! Your Egyptian Eggplant Dish (Masaa’a) is now ready to be served!
Substitutions and Variations
As with any recipe, there are always ways to adapt the ingredients and put your own spin on it. Here are a few substitutions and variations for the Egyptian eggplant dish (masaa’a) recipe that you might enjoy.
– Vegetarian Version: To make this dish vegetarian, simply omit the ground beef and use vegetable broth or water instead of beef broth. You can also add more chickpeas to bulk up the protein content.
– Spicy Eggplant: If you’re a fan of spicy food, add some crushed red pepper flakes or harissa paste to the tomato sauce mixture. This will give the dish a little kick and elevate the flavors of the eggplant and other vegetables.
– Fattah Variation: A popular variation of this dish is called Fattah, which is made by layering fried pita bread, rice, and roasted eggplant before pouring over a tomato sauce. You can try substituting some of the potatoes and chickpeas in the original recipe with these ingredients for a delicious twist on this traditional Egyptian dish.
– Baked Eggplant: To cut down on calories and oil usage, try baking the eggplant slices instead of frying them. Simply place thinly sliced eggplant in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, brush lightly with extra virgin olive oil, season with salt, pepper, and cumin, then bake in a preheated oven at 400°F for 20-25 minutes or until tender and golden brown.
– Eggplant Parmesan Style: For an Italian twist on this dish, you can substitute the tomato sauce with marinara sauce and top with mozzarella cheese before baking in the oven until bubbly and golden brown. This eggplant parmesan variation is sure to become a family favorite!
Experimenting with these substitutions and variations is just one way to explore different flavors while still staying true to traditional middle eastern cuisine. Whatever route you choose to take, this recipe will be egg-cellent every time!
Serving and Pairing
Thankfully, the beauty of this Egyptian eggplant dish is that it pairs well with a variety of flavorful sides!
To start, I recommend serving this dish on top of fluffy white rice. When the savory sauce intermingles with the tender grains of rice, you’ll feel as though you’ve been transported to the Middle East.
For an added spicy kick, serve alongside some cumin-seasoned roasted chickpeas or a side salad made from crisp greens and juicy cherry tomatoes.
If you’re feeling especially indulgent, try pairing this dish with some freshly baked pita bread or crusty French baguette for optimal dipping.
And as far as beverage pairings go, I suggest serving this dish alongside a refreshing yet robust red wine like Shiraz or Cabernet Sauvignon. Alternatively, if you’re looking for a non-alcoholic option, why not try traditional mint tea? The fresh and zesty herbs will complement the warm flavors of the dish perfectly.
Whether you’re hosting friends for a decadent dinner party or cooking for your own comfort-food cravings, this eggplant recipe is sure to be a crowd-pleaser. So grab your favorite sides and get ready to indulge in some authentic Middle Eastern cuisine!
Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating
One of the best things about this Egyptian Eggplant Dish recipe is that it can be easily made ahead of time and stored for later. You can prepare the dish a day ahead, store it in the fridge and reheat it when you need to serve it.
To make ahead, prepare the dish as directed in the recipe how-to section, but stop before baking it in the oven. Instead, transfer the eggplant and tomato sauce mixture into a large baking dish, cover tightly and store in the fridge until needed. This will allow the flavors to meld together even more and make for a tastier final product.
When you’re ready to reheat, preheat your oven to 350°F (180°C). Take the baking dish out of the fridge and let it sit at room temperature for 15-20 minutes. This will help reduce the cooking time needed while reheating. Cover with foil and bake for 20-25 minutes until heated through.
If you have leftovers from dinner or prepared too much, don’t worry! This eggplant dish makes incredible leftovers that are just as delicious as fresh ones. Let them cool to room temperature before covering with plastic wrap or transferring to an airtight container. Store them in the fridge and consume within four days.
Reheating leftovers is easy; remove from storage, cover with plastic wrap or microwave-safe lid/dish, then heat in the microwave on high power for 2-3 minutes or until heated through.
Now that you know how easy it is to make ahead, store, and reheat this Egyptian Eggplant Dish recipe – you can plan ahead without compromising on flavor!
Tips for Perfect Results
Cooking eggplant can be tricky for some people, but with some tips and tricks, you can achieve perfect results every time. Here are my tips to help you make the best Egyptian eggplant dish (masaa’a) possible:
1. Soak the eggplant: Eggplants can be bitter and tough, especially when they are not fresh. To avoid this, slice your eggplants into thick rounds then place them in a colander over a bowl or in the sink. Sprinkle salt on each slice and let them sit for about 30 minutes. This will draw out any excess water and bitterness.
2. Don’t skip frying the eggplant: Frying the eggplant slices is an essential step in this recipe because it not only softens the eggplant slices but also gives them a mouth-watering taste that cannot be achieved otherwise. Make sure to use extra-virgin olive oil and fry the eggplant until golden brown on each side. The more golden you get them, the better!
3. Use high-quality tomatoes: Tomatoes are one of the main ingredients in this recipe, so it’s essential to use good quality ones to ensure a delicious taste. You can either use canned tomato sauce or fresh-cooked tomatoes—the choice is yours.
4. Enhance the taste with spices: Cumin, pepper, and garlic are just a few of my favorite spices that I like to add to this dish to make it more flavorful. Feel free to experiment with other spices too! For example, if you love spicy food, add some red pepper flakes.
5. Layer your ingredients properly: When making masaa’a, make sure you layer your fried eggplants, tomatoes sauce, onions, chickpeas, bell pepper, and potatoes evenly across your baking dish so that they are beautifully integrated after cooking.
6. Cover with aluminum foil before baking: While baking masaa’a in the oven could take half an hour at around 350 – 365° Fahrenheit(170-185° Celsius), it is crucial to cover it tightly with aluminum foil before putting it in the oven; this step would not only lock in the moisture but also prevent the top from drying out.
By following these tips and tricks for creating an authentic Egyptian eggplant dish (masaa’a), you’ll end up with a highly nutritious yet appetizing meal that will leave your family wanting more every time you make it!
Before we proceed to the FAQ section of this Egyptian Eggplant Dish (Masaa’a) Recipe, let me remind you that cooking can be a bit daunting especially if you’re trying a new recipe. If you’re feeling anxious or doubtful, know that it’s normal, and remember that practice makes perfect! Cooking is an art that requires patience, creativity, and experimentation. So keep an open mind as we dive in to answer some frequently asked questions about this delicious Egyptian Eggplant Dish (Masaa’a) Recipe.
What is Mesakaa?
The Egyptian dish known as Mesaka’a boasts an explosive combination of flavors that will excite your taste buds. It features crispy fried eggplants that intermingle with sweet, spicy, and mildly hot peppers, all smothered in a rich and tangy tomato sauce infused with garlic and cumin. Get ready for a dish that will awaken your senses and leave you craving for more.
Does eggplant need to be soaked before frying?
When it comes to this recipe, there’s no need to soak the eggplant before frying it. Although soaking is common for some cooking methods, it’s not necessary in this particular case.
How long should you soak eggplant before cooking?
To prep the eggplants, remove the stems and cut them into 1-inch slices, lengthwise. Submerge the slices in salt water and weigh them down with a plate to keep them under the brine. Allow them to soak for 30-60 minutes.
What is eggplant dish called?
This classic southern Italian dish, also called parmigiana di melanzane or eggplant Parmigiana, is a delicious casserole that features crispy and fried eggplant slices. The eggplant is then layered with marinara sauce, parmesan cheese, and mozzarella before being topped with breadcrumbs and baked to perfection. This hearty and flavorful meal is sure to satisfy your taste buds.
In conclusion, this Egyptian Eggplant Dish (Masaa’a) recipe is undoubtedly some of the best food you’ll ever taste. It’s the perfect dish to add a burst of flavor to your dining table, no matter if you’re cooking for your family or hosting a dinner party with friends. With its savory taste and steaming blend of ingredients such as eggplants, chickpeas, onions, and garlic cloves, this Masaa’a recipe will carry you away to the very streets of Egypt and leave you wanting more.
Not to mention that this Egyptian Eggplant Dish (Masaa’a) can be prepared quickly and easily using ordinary kitchen staples. You’ll only need basic ingredients like olive oil, tomato sauce, and a few spices to get started. Additionally, this dish offers countless substitutions and variations that give it versatility while still retaining its authentic Egyptian taste.
If you’re looking for a healthy and delicious food option for any time of day, this Masaa’a recipe is just what you need. It’s low in fat and calories while still filling enough to satisfy even the hungriest of appetites. With make-ahead, storing, and reheating tips included in this recipe that cooks can use to their advantage.
In summary, with all the above information provided about the recipe for Egyptian Eggplant Dish (Masaa’a), it’s undeniable that giving this recipe a try is absolutely worth it. Get creative with your choice of variations and substitutions; invite loved ones over to share in the experience of trying this impressive and tasty dish. You won’t regret cooking up a storm with this easy-to-follow recipe in your kitchen!
Egyptian Eggplant Dish (Masaa’a) Recipe
- 1 large eggplant, cut into 1/2 inch slices
- 2 large potatoes, cubed
- 1 green bell pepper, sliced
- 1 (15 ounce) can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
- 2 garlic cloves, chopped
- 1 large onion, thinly sliced
- 1 (15 ounce) can tomato sauce
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon coriander
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1 teaspoon good mustard
- oil, for frying
- Fry the eggplant slices in oil until golden, set aside on paper towels to drain, and lightly salt.
- Fry potatoes until golden and set aside on paper towels to drain. Lightly salt.
- Fry pepper slices in oil until tender, set aside.
- In a pan, saute the onion until soft. Add Garlic, and saute a 1-2 min more.
- Add the spices and mustard (except salt, unless you want more- I usually think the salted veggies are salty enough. Just taste and see).
- Add in the veggies and tomato sauce and mix well.
- Cook just long enough to heat through.
- Sprinkle with chickpeas.