Eggplant with Ground Beef (Patlican Musakka/Oturtma)

Eggplant with Ground Beef (Patlican Musakka/Oturtma)
Eggplant with Ground Beef (Patlican Musakka/Oturtma)

2 eggplants, peeled and cut into ½ inch thick slices
1 big onion, chopped
½ lb (200 gr) ground beef
2 tomatoes, diced / 1 cup tomato in a can/ 1 tbsp tomato paste
1 cup oil for frying the eggplant
1 green pepper, chopped
1 tsp salt
½ tsp cumin
½ tsp black pepper
2 cloves of garlic, sliced thin (optional)
½ cup hot or warm water

Peel the whole eggplant or you can peel striped. Slice them in ½ inch wide and then place them in a bowl and cover the eggplants with water. Let them stand for 30 minutes in water. Then, drain the eggplants and wipe with a piece of cloth. In a large skillet place the oil and fry the eggplants until they change in color. Do not over fry for not to damage the pieces. Place the fried eggplant pieces in a Pyrex dish and sprinkle salt on them.
You can use the same skillet or a smaller one. Place the ground beef and 1 tbsp oil and cook until the meat changes in color. Then add the chopped onions and sauté for 1-2 minutes. Add the chopped peppers, garlic (optional) tomatoes or tomato paste and ½ tbsp salt. Sauté for 5 minutes. Finally add the cumin and black pepper. Spread this mixture evenly on the fried eggplants and add the hot water.
Preheat the oven to 375 F (190 C) and cook for about 30 minutes.
You can serve this dish with pilaf and yogurt.

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