Maqluba - Veal with Rice, Eggplants and Potatoes
- veal - 17.5 oz (500 g), tender
- onions - 1 head
- eggplants - 1
- potatoes - 3, medium
- rice - 1 cup
- celery - 1 large bunch
- bay leaf - 2
- black pepper - 10, grains
- vegetable broth - 1 cube
Dice the veal of a young calf finely in a form and put it on the stove in a pot with salted water. Put 2 bay leaves, the black pepper and sliced celery in the water. Boil the meat well, while removing the foam periodically.
Cut the peeled eggplant into thin round slices, sprinkle them with salt and leave them for 15-20 min. to release their dark, bitter juice. Peel the potatoes as well and cut them into round slices.
Heat oil in a pan, fry the potatoes and eggplant in it separately, leaving them in separate container after. Next comes the arrangement, which is specific for this dish.
Take a suitable small pot, not too deep, with about 9 1/2″ (24 cm) diameter. Place 2 strips of baking paper at the bottom in a cross shape (to prevent the dish from sticking), smear it with butter at room temperature and arrange the round slices of chopped onions first.
Then arrange the meat, fried potatoes, slices of eggplant and washed rice in layers. When arranging them, lightly salt the ingredients and sprinkle with the crumbled vegetable broth cube.
Pour on a little of the broth, in which you had boiled the meat, but strain it first. Pour in enough to just cover the rice. Put the pot on the stove and once it comes to a boil, lower the heat.
Leave the dish to simmer on low heat, until the rice is boiled - about 20 min. Once you take it off the stove, leave it to sit with the lid closed for 15 min.
Then, place a large plate over the pot and invert the dish carefully. Remove the baking paper. Serve with vegetables and yoghurt.