Ntroba Forowee

An unusual West African method of cooking aubergine with ham and shrimps, Ntroba Forowee (nat-row-bah froy) can be served with plain boiled rice and a green salad or as accompaniment to grilled meat.

1 aubergine , peeled, cubed and degorged l1 teaspoons salt

3 tablespoons peanut oil

1 large onion, sliced

2 tomatoes, blanched, peeled, seeded and diced

1 tablespoon tomato puree

1 teaspoon black pepper

5 fl. oz. chicken stock

8 oz. cooked ham, cut into strips

4 oz. shrimps, shelled

1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley

Place the aubergine and 1 teaspoon of the salt in a medium-sized saucepan. Pour over enough water to cover. Place the saucepan over moderate heat and bring the water to the boil. Cover the pan, reduce the heat to low and cook the aubergine for 10 to 15 minutes or until it is soft. Remove the pan from the heat and drain the aubergine cubes in a colander.

Transfer the aubergine cubes to a medium-sized mixing bowl. Using a kitchen fork, mash the cubes until they form a puree.

Set aside.

In a large saucepan, heat the oil over moderate heat. When it is hot, add the onion and fry, stirring occasionally, for 5 to 7 minutes or until it is soft and trans-lucent but not brown.

Add the tomatoes, tomato puree, the remaining salt, the pepper, the aubergine puree and stock and cook, stirring occasionally, for 10 to 15 minutes or until the mixture has thickened.

Stir in the ham and shrimps and cook for 3 to 4 minutes or until they are hot.

Transfer the mixture to a warmed serving dish. Sprinkle with the parsley and serve immediately.