This is a gorgeous baked dish with eggplants, cream and 3 soft cheeses. It is made without eggs and the result is an addictive dish with a thick set custard-like consistency.
The recipe is an adapted version of Ottolenghi’s Eggplant Cheesecake from Plenty More. I have made it egg-free. If you want to check the original recipe have a look here.
Like all good cheesecakes, tucking into this is so effortless and soothing that it’s easy to forget yourself and just gobble up more and more. And, like a sweet cheesecake, it’s also a bit of a no-brainer that yields very impressive results.
This is a soft dish, so is best spooned from the baking dish onto serving plates. A rustic alternative would be to bake it in a casserole and spoon out portions at the table.
Serve as a starter or for lunch with a lemony salad of bitter leaves and fresh herbs.
3-Cheese Eggplant Bake
90ml olive oil
2 medium eggplant (700g), cut into 2cm thick slices
sea salt and black pepper
150g cream cheese
75g soft goats cheese
60ml double cream
3 Tblspn chickpea flour
0.5 tspn eno fruit salts
150g baby plum or cherry tomatoes, cut in half lengthways
2 Tblspn picked oregano leaves, torn
1 tspn za’atar (optional)
Preheat the oven to 210C. Line with foil or baking paper the base and sides of a deep, 19cm square baking tin (or a round, 20cm diameter dish), then brush lightly with oil.
Lay the aubergine slices on a baking sheet lined with greaseproof paper and brush all over with 4 Tblspn of olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, and roast in the hot oven for 40 minutes – the aubergines need to go soft and golden. When cooked, remove, set aside to cool, and lower the oven to 175C.
Put the feta, cream cheese, cream, chickpea flour, eno and some pepper in a bowl. Add a little hot water – enough to soften the cheeses and make a thick but pourable consistency. Whisk with a stick blender until smooth.
Arrange the aubergine neatly in the baking tin – the slices should fill up the tray as they lean against each other, almost standing on their sides. Fill the gaps with tomatoes and sprinkle over half the oregano.
Pour in just enough of the cheese mix to leave some aubergine and tomatoes exposed. You might need to help it flow down between the eggplant slices. Sprinkle over the remaining oregano and bake for 40 – 60 minutes, or until the “custard” sets.
Leave the cake to cool down to room temperature, then remove it from the tin (or can be served from the dish). Before serving, gently brush all over with za’atar mixed with a tspn of olive oil, or just olive oil.