Recipe: Aubergine and Minced Lamb Bake with Tamarind and Tomato Sauce

A fatteh recipe from Baladi by Joudie Kalla

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Aubergine and Minced Lamb Bake from Baladi

Aubergine and Minced Lamb Bake from Baladi [©Murdoch Books]

<i>Baladi</i> by Joudie Kalla


The wide-ranging and wonderful Middle Eastern flavours of Palestine are highlighted in recipes that can be combined in meals or enjoyed individually.

Baladi means 'my home, land and country' and is an apt name for her Joudie Kalla's second cookbook, where she uncovers more of the cuisine of her homeland, Palestine.

This is Joudie's favourite recipe for fatteh:

 Joudie writes:

Fatteh is one of those dishes that is eaten across all of the Middle East. It is made in so many different ways and with so many different ingredients, which is what makes it such a fabulous dish. Fatteh is basically any dish that has fried or toasted bread at the base, which then absorbs the liquid of the dish. There is fattet hummus and fattet djaj (both of which are in my first book), and many more options. I love all of them, but I think this one just beats them, as I love tamarind, which plays an important role in this dish, making it tangy and smooth at the same time.  

Lamia’s fatteh makdous
(Aubergine and minced lamb bake with tamarind and tomato sauce)

Ingredients (Serves 6-8)

  • 2 thick Khubez (page 89), cut into 2cm diamond shapes [Ed: use pita bread, or look for recipes online]
  • sunflower oil
  • 3 aubergines, cut into thick 3cm chunks, with strips of skin removed to resemble zebra stripes
  • olive oil
  • 300g lamb mince
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • small bunch of fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped, to garnish

For the yogurt mix

  • 800g thick Greek yogurt
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 green chilli, minced
  • 1 tsp salt

For the tomato tamarind sauce

  • 2 onions, cut into half-moon slices
  • 2 x 500g cartons of tomato passata [Ed: ie 1 litre]
  • 4–5 tbsp tamarind liquid
  • 1 tsp salt


Begin by making the bread. Preheat the oven to 190ºC Fan (210ºC/425ºF/Gas 6–7). Place the bread pieces on a tray, drizzle some sunflower oil over the top and cook until golden and crunchy, about 10–12 minutes. [Ed: if you are using ready-made pita bread, do this step later, and toast them for less time]

While they are cooking, make the yogurt mix. Place the yogurt, garlic and chilli in a bowl, add the salt and place in the fridge.

Next, make the tomato tamarind sauce. Sauté the onions in a little sunflower oil for about 15 minutes until golden, then add the passata, tamarind and salt and let it stew for about 30 minutes.

Place enough sunflower oil in a heavy pot to fry the aubergines. You want to cook them until they are golden or a little more than that. Once they are all cooked, set them aside.

Heat a little olive oil in a pan over a high heat and sauté the mince, salt, pepper and cinnamon for about 10 minutes until browned and cooked through.

Now for the layering part: place the bread at the bottom of a deep dish, add the yogurt mixture over the top, followed by the tomato mixture all over the yogurt to cover it. You don’t want to mix it together – it doesn’t matter if it gets a little swirled in, but try to layer it. Then add the fried aubergines, then the meat over the top, and scatter with fresh parsley. And serve.

It is literally heaven, and you won’t be able to stop eating it, especially the toasted bread at the bottom which has soaked up all the flavours. 


This recipe is from Baladi by Judie Kalla and reproduced here with the kind permission of the publisher.

Read more in the press release here »

Baladi: a celebration of food from land and sea by Joudie Kalla is published by Mudoch Books (Syd, NSW; Oct 2018; HC; 256pp; RRP A$49.99).

It is available at good bookshops and can be purchased online via »

See links below for further recipes.



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