Turkish Stuffed Eggplant with Minced Lamb

BestDays™ Turkish Stuffed Eggplant With Minced Lamb

Meet Nathan

Nathan has been an award-winning food stylist for print and film advertising for the past 26 years and is an internationally published food and travel journalist. He has been a regular guest host for Global BCTV News with his “Saturday Chefs” and “Fong on Food” segments, as well as is a columnist for The Vancouver Sun and a regular contributor to Taste Magazine. To explore the world of food with Nathan, visit fongonfood.com.

Chef Nathan Fong’s recipe inspiration

I love the flavours and cuisine of Turkey. A wonderful example of Turkish cuisine is their beloved eggplants stuffed with a minced meat filling. Minced lamb or beef is sautéed with onions and garlic and spiced with cumin, chilies and cinnamon. Stuffed into eggplants and baked with a light tomato sauce, this is one of my favourite Turkish dishes. Use the elongated Asian style eggplants as they are tender and sweet and perfect for this comforting Turkish dish.


  • 4 Asian eggplants
  • 2 Tbsp (30 mL) canola oil
  • 1 Tbsp (15 mL) olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • ½ lb (250 g) minced beef or lamb
  • ½ tsp (3 mL) cinnamon
  • ½ tsp (3 mL) ground cumin
  • 2 medium tomatoes, skinned and coarsely chopped
  • ½ cup (125 mL) chopped flat leaf parsley
  • ½ tsp (3 mL) red pepper flakes, or to taste
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 2 medium tomatoes, sliced
  • 1 cup (250 mL) hot water
  • 1 Tbsp (15 mL) tomato paste
  • 1 Tbsp (15 mL) red pepper paste or chili paste
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) olive oil



Peel one quarter of eggplant, lengthwise, then roll another quarter and peel another strip. Continue until all four quarters are peeled. Heat the canola oil in a deep skillet over medium heat. Add the eggplants and sauté until golden brown, turning over in the oil to fry until golden all around. Slit lengthwise the eggplant from 1-inch from the top to 1-inch of the bottom, so that they remain in one whole piece. Place them side by side in a single layer slit face up in a baking dish.


Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté until lightly browned. Add the garlic, ground meat, cinnamon and cumin and sauté for 10 minutes, then cover and cook over low heat until there is no moisture left. Add the chopped tomatoes and cook for another 5 minutes. Mix in parsley, red pepper flakes and season with salt and pepper.


Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C).


Enlarge the slit on each eggplant and stuff with the meat mixture. Place a couple of tomato slices on top of each eggplant. Whisk together the hot water, tomato paste, red pepper paste or chili paste and olive oil. Drizzle over the eggplants. Place into oven and bake 15 to 20 minutes. Serve hot.

Nutrition Information per serving size

  • Total Calories: 267
  • Fat 16 g
  • Saturated Fat: 3 g
  • Cholesterol: 22 mg
  • Sodium: 185 mg
  • Potassium: 1065 mg
  • Total Carbohydrates: 22 g
  • Fibre: 10 g
  • Sugars: 10 g
  • Protein: 13 g
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