Spiedini di Vitello di Chianina con Melanzane & Riso e Salsa di Pomodoro
Chianina Veal Skewers & Eggplant on Rice and Tomato Sugo
Another quick, easy and pretty terrific little number for you here. They say a picture paints a thousand words now don't they? Well, what can I possibly say that will better describe the way this tasted? You're right... nothing! So I will just tell you how easy it was to make instead!
Ok- let's get the obvious stuff out of the way first... and I am sure I don't need to tell you how to steam some rice. At least I hope not! The rest of the meal will be finished in the 15 minutes it will take for the rice to cook- so get moving! It CAN be done!
Cut the aubergine in a relatively thick slice- about the thickness of your finger and set it onto a hot grill pan without any oil for about a minute or two on each side...this will start it forming a light crust on the outside- so that when you add a little olive oil, it will not soak up too much of it and become soggy- as it otherwise would. Put a sprig of rosemary and a crushed clove of garlic into the pan, add a splash of oil and season with salt and pepper. Continue frying for 2-3 minutes on either side until golden and delicious.
By now, the pan should have a nice crusty coating from the oil, garlic and rosemary- so remove the aubergine and de-glaze it with a splash of white wine. Stir and loosen all of those good flavors from the base of the pan and then add your veal skewers. That's right- pop them into the steaming wine! I don't want to grill the meat, but rather to quickly "steam" it in all of those lovely aromas- 1-2 minutes on either side are enough. The meat will remain pale, except for some browning due to the burnt-on flavors from the pan- but that is fine. Remove from the heat, drizzle with a little olive oil, honey, salt and pepper and pop into a warm oven, along with the aubergine until we have made that sauce!
For the tomato sauce, turn the heat up high and pop in a handful of cherry tomatoes that have been halved, a teaspoon of sugar, a good pinch of salt and another chopped clove of garlic. Now add another little drop of olive oil and a tablespoon of tomato paste and keep stirring for 1-2 minutes, to get the puree well integrated into the tomatoes. Add another shot of wine, a fresh sprig of rosemary and a splash of boiling water, just to get the sauce to a nice consistency. Reduce the sauce down for 4-5 minutes at a moderately high heat and start getting your plates ready to serve!
Set the aubergine on a bed of rice and spoon the cherry tomato sauce out on either side. Sprinkle both with some finely chopped parsley and a light drizzle of olive oil. Add the skewers and a little garnish and get ready to sit back to a wonderful meal... and a nice glass of fruity Nero d'Avola would go very well with this to make everything just perfect!