Time: 1 hour (even better made ahead of time and either reheated or eaten at cool room temperature)
  Difficulty: easy
  Serves: 4 as a main course, 6 as part of an antipasto


  • 1 large or 2 medium sized aubergines, unpeeled, cut into two-bite sized chunks

  • salt as needed

  • 4-6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, or as needed

  • 2 large 3 small to medium sized onions, peeled and sliced lengthwise

  • 2- 3 medium sized zucchini, sliced thickly

  • 3 tablespoons chopped flat leaf parsley

  • 4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

  • 2 cans (each about 400g) or 1 can 800g pomodoro pelato di Napoli (Naples peeled plum tomatoes)

  • dried oregano leaves, as desired

  • 500 g canned chickpeas, drained


Sprinkle the aubergines with salt and leave to sit 30-60 minutes to sweat out excess juices. Rinse well, and blot dry.

Heat about half the oil in a heavy frying pan, and brown the aubergine in it; remove to a separate plate or bowl.

To the hot pan, add another spoonful or two of the olive oil, and sauté the onions until they are softened, then add the zucchini and garlic; cook together for about five minutes or until the zucchini are just cooked slightly.

Return the aubergine to the pan with the zucchini and onions, add the tomatoes, oregano and chickpeas, and bring to the boil.

Reduce the heat and cook at a simmer, covered, for about 45 minutes; remove the cover, and raise the heat again to cook off any excess liquid.

Season with salt and pepper, and if needed a tiny pinch of sugar or tomato concentrate. Serve hot or at room temperature, drizzled with extra virgin olive oil.

Recipe courtesy of Marlena Spieler’s out of print cookbook “Mediterranean Cooking The Healthful Way” (Prima Press, USA)