Luke Selby’s lockdown recipes

Our first staff food highlight is Luke Selby’s Aubergine Parmigiana from his e-book, Lockdown Dinners.

Like many chefs during lockdown, Luke kept on cooking. He used his Michelin-starred skills he created some tasty dishes for his household, and then wrapped them up into an e-book for keen cooks to follow.

A restaurant with its outdoor seating packed away due to lockdown restrictions

Luke’s e-cookbook also supports a great cause because each copy sold donates some proceeds towards First Love Foundation. First Love Foundation Charity helps people in crisis with a holistic model that includes advice, support and emergency food. Support from purchases of this book helps them to aid the most vulnerable during this year’s crisis.

Aubergine Parmigiana

We used to make this for staff food in the restaurant and all the Italians would be super excited when they found out this was for tea. I like it with olives on top, but I know that to some of my Italian friends, that’s sacrilege!

Luke Selby on his Aubergine parmigiana
Chef Luke Selbys final dish: aubergine parmigiana

Serves: 4 people
Baking: 45 mins

Tomato Sauce
• 1x White onion, diced
• 4x Cloves garlic, sliced
• 50g Olive oil
• 20g Sugar
• 1/2tsp Salt
• 20ml Balsamic vinegar
• 20g Tomato paste
• 2x Tins of chopped tomato
• 1/2tsp Oregano

• 8x Aubergines, sliced into 1cm circles
• 1tsp Salt
• 20g Olive oil

• 1x Bunch picked basil
• 100g Parmesan
• 1x Ball mozzarella
• 25g Black olives, chopped

  • Pre-heat the oven to 180°C.
  • Sweat the onion and garlic in the olive oil and salt. Use a low heat for about 10 minutes or until soft.
  • Add the sugar, balsamic vinegar and tomato paste and cook for another 5 minutes.

A close up of Chef Luke Selbys aubergine parmigiana staff lunch
  • Add the tinned tomato and oregano, then simmer slowly for 30 minutes until the sauce reaches a thick consistency.
  • Salt the aubergines evenly and sit in a colander for 30 minutes. The salt will draw out extra moisture from the aubergine and reduce the bitterness.
  • Coat the slices in olive oil and fry on each side until golden. This takes about 2 minutes each side.
  • To assemble, place a layer of aubergines in the bottom of a casserole dish. Add a layer of tomato sauce, scatter basil leaves and parmesan. Repeat layers. Finish the top with grated parmesan and strips of mozzarella.
  • Bake in the oven for 45 minutes at 180°C.
  • To finish, garnish with the olives and fresh basil leaves.
A billboard tells Londoners to keep looking fro joy during lockdown

Recipes by Luke Selby —
Design by Mateusz Piekarski — Graphic Practice —
Photography by Jodi Hinds —

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