Studying abroad and living with a host mother comes with a lot of great benefits – a homey atmosphere, someone to talk to and practice my Spanish with, and lots of local knowledge, to name a few. Yet, possibly my favorite aspect of living with her is the food. If I died and went to heaven, I am positive that this woman would be there, greeting me with homemade croquettas. My jeans may have become a little tighter, but my stomach has never been happier.
One of her specialties is a super simple local dish that’s called tumbet. It is one of the typical foods of the island of Mallorca, and consists of three main ingredients – eggplant, potato, and tomato sauce. The three things go together like peanut butter and jelly, and are also paired well with a side of meat or a fried egg.
With the help of Google translate and some real-life demonstrations, I finally managed to get her special recipe.
- 2 large eggplants
- 2 large potatoes
- Olive Oil
- Homemade or store bought plain tomato sauce
- 2 Bay leaves
- Slice the potatoes (peeled) and eggplants into several round, disk-like circles. They should be fine, only about a quarter of an inch thick.
- Salt all the discs, and allow them to sit for about 20 minutes to absorb it. Rinse.
- Fry eggplant and potato in a sauté pan with a good amount of olive oil.
- On a round serving dish, lay the potato slices to build the bottom layer. They should cover the bottom of the plate.
- Repeat with a layer of eggplant.
- In a small sauté pan, mix some olive oil, salt, pepper, and a bay leaf to make the first sauce. Drizzle this on after ever two layers of eggplant and potato.
- Add as many layers of potato and eggplant as your heart desires, and drizzle more of the olive oil on top.
- Once your stack is complete, heat the tomato sauce with salt, pepper, and the other bay leaf. Lay this sauce across the top, and sprinkle with oregano.
This dish can be served hot or cold. Give this recipe a try. Trust me; it will change your life.
- Abby Rasweiler