Eggplant makes a tasty vessel for the spiced lamb mince mixture and melted cheese.


  • 4 small (about 750g) eggplants, halved lengthways (see notes)
  • 2 tbs extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small brown onion, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 350g lamb mince
  • 125ml (1/2 cup) red wine
  • 250ml (1 cup) tomato passata
  • 2 tsp balsamic vinegar
  • 40g (1 cup) sourdough, torn into large breadcrumbs
  • 85g (3/4 cup) fresh mozzarella, grated
  • 50g feta, crumbled
  • Salad leaves and tomatoes, to serve
  • Small purple basil leaves, to serve


  1. Preheat oven to 180C/160C fan-forced. Line a baking tray with baking paper. Use a small sharp knife and a spoon to scoop out eggplant flesh, leaving a 1cm border. Finely chop flesh. Place shells on prepared tray. Spray with oil. Season. Cook for 10 minutes or until is starts to soften.
  2. Heat 1 tbs of the oil in a frying pan over medium heat. Add onion. Cook, stirring, for 2 minutes or until soft. Stir in eggplant flesh for 3 minutes or until tender. Stir in garlic, cinnamon and 1 tsp of the oregano for 1 minute until aromatic. Transfer to a bowl.
  3. Heat 2 tsp of the remaining oil over high heat. Add mince and cook, stirring with a wooden spoon to break up lumps, for 3 minutes or until brown. Return onion mixture to pan. Stir in wine for 2 minutes or until evaporated. Stir in passata. Reduce heat to low. Simmer for 5 minutes or until it thickens. Stir in vinegar for 2 minutes. Divide mince mixture among eggplant shells. Cover with foil. Bake for 15 minutes or until eggplant is tender.
  4. Combine breadcrumbs, cheeses, remaining oregano and oil in a bowl. Season. Sprinkle and press mixture over top of eggplant filling. Bake, uncovered, for 15 minutes or until topping is crisp. Serve with salad. Sprinkle with micro herbs.