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    Aubergine and Egg Tagine with Sea Salt

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    Aubergine and Egg Tagine with Sea Salt

    This Moroccan vegetable stew should only be lightly spiced to retain the individual vegetable flavours. Make the lemon and cardamom oil the day before, if possible, to allow the flavours to infuse. This can also be served with warmed, split pitta breads.

    Serves: 4 people


    • For the lemon and cardamom oil
    • 125ml Waitrose Extra Virgin Olive Oil
    • 10 green cardamom pods, smashed and husks discarded
    • 1 lemon, roughly chopped
    • 2 medium onions, halved and finely sliced
    • 3 garlic cloves, halved
    • 4 x 5cm cinnamon sticks
    • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
    • Good pinch of saffron threads
    • 2tsp clear honey
    • 1tbsp sultanas
    • 2 medium aubergines
    • 2tsp Bart Spices Dulce Pimenton
    • 4 large eggs, boiled for 5 minutes, shelled and halved
    • For the seed salt
    • 1tbsp of cumin seeds
    • 1tbsp of sesame seeds
    • 2tsp Maldon Sea Salt
    • 2 x 110g packs Waitrose Raisins and Sunflower Seeds Couscous
    • 1 pack Waitrose Fresh Mint, leaves only


    1. Put the oil, cardamom seeds and lemon in a small pan and heat gently (do not fry) until the lemon peel is lightly stewed and has softened. Leave to infuse overnight, if possible.
    2. Soften the onions and garlic with the cinnamon in 3tbsp of the lemon and cardamom oil and season well. Add the saffron, honey, sultanas and 400ml water and season again. Simmer for about 20 minutes or until reduced by half.
    3. Quarter the aubergines lengthways, slice out the seed core and discard. Slice the quarters into chunks, so that each piece retains a section of skin. Sprinkle the flesh with the Dulce Pimenton, salt and pepper. Heat the remaining lemon oil and fry the aubergine chunks briskly, turning from time to time, until lightly browned all over.
    4. Lay the browned aubergine on top of the onion mixture in the pan, together with the halved eggs. Cover and cook over a medium heat for 3 minutes until the aubergine is tender and the eggs are warmed through.
    5. Make the seed salt heat a frying pan until hot. Briefly dry-fry the sesame seeds and cumin seeds until just fragrant. Remove from the pan and mix with the sea salt. Divide the warm couscous between four deep bowls. Stir the mint leaves carefully into the aubergine mixture so that you don't break up the aubergine chunks and eggs. Pile into the bowls, then scatter the seed salt over the top.
    6. This recipe was first published on Waitrose.com in September 1999.

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