Recipe for Coucou Bademjan (Thick Eggplant And Egg Pancake)


7 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium onion; peeled and cut into 1/8 inch slices
1 eggplant; (about lb.)
peeled and cut into 1 inc
1 cup water
1 teaspoon turmeric
1 teaspoon salt
1 black pepper; freshly ground
4 egg


In a heavy 8 to 10 inch skillet, heat 4 tablespoons of the olive oil over moderate heat until a light haze forms above it. Add the onions and, stirring frequently, cook for 8 to 10 minutes, or until the slices are deeply browned. Transfer the onions to a plate and set aside. Add the eggplant and 1 tablespoon of the remaining oil to the skillet and toss the cubes about to coat them well. Stir in the water, turmeric, salt and a few grindings of pepper, and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to low, cover the skillet tightly, and simmer for 10 minutes, or until the cubes of eggplant are tender and show no resistance when pierced with the point of a small, sharp knife. Return the onions to the skillet and, stirring frequently, cook briskly until almost all of the liquid in the pan has evaporated. Transfer the eggplant and onions to a deep mixing bowl and cool to room temperature. Taste for seasoning. One at a time beat the eggs into the mixture. In a heavy 10 inch skillet, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil over moderate heat until a light haze forms above it. Pour in the eggplant mixture, cover tightly and cook over low heat for 4 or 5 minutes, or until the outside edges of the pancake are firm but the center is still moist. Run a knife around the circumference of the pan to free the pancake. Then cut it into 4 pie shaped wedges. Continue cooking for 1 or 2 minutes more, shaking the pan back and forth gently. When the center of the pancake is firm, cover the skillet with a flat plate and, grasping the plate and skillet firmly together, invert them and turn the pancake out on the plate. Then carefully slide the pancake back into the pan. Cover again and cook 4 to 5 minutes more to brown the underside. Slide the coucou out of the pan to a serving plate and serve hot or cold, accompanied, if you like, with "borani" or with either thinly sliced tomatoes or radishes.

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