Savory Recipe! Chef Hassan M’Souli’s Eggplant Stack

This Eggplant Stack is the perfect intro to Moroccan cuisine.

sydney australia chef Hassan Restaurant Evening
PHOTO Chef Hassan M’Souli

Hassan M’Souli, executive chef at Out of Africa restaurant in Manly, Australia, has been making headlines for his remarkable North African flavors for 25 years. Born in Casablanca, Morocco, his specialty is Moroccan cuisine, which he pioneered in Sydney when he arrived in 1985. Most Australians had not tasted the exotic flavors, and once they did, they wanted more. Three restaurants later, Hassan continues to provide award winning dishes and traditional Moroccan hospitality to every guest that walks in the door. For those of you who have never tasted Moroccan food, you are missing out. Hassan’s personal recipe for the Eggplant Stack is the perfect way to start your venture into Moroccan cooking.

Don’t forget the best part about cooking is taking risks, so try some new ingredients and spices! Your risks will pay off. Trust me, haloumi is delicious.

Haloumi heaven copy chef australia sydney


  • 2 medium eggplants (aubergine)
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 150g goat cheese log, crumbled
  • 100g haloumi, sliced
  • I egg, beaten
  • 1 cup milk
  • 8 semi-dried tomatoes
  • plain (all purpose) flour, to coat
  • 10 kalamata olives, crushed
  • 1 cup (250ml) olive oil
  • ½ bunch basil, leaves picked
  • 1 red capsicum (bell pepper)
  • 1 preserved lemon
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

1. Cut the eggplant lengthways into 1cm slices. Take 6 of the largest slices. Sprinkle with some of the salt and stand for 30 minutes to draw out any bitterness. Rinse and pat dry.

2. Soak the eggplant in milk for 5 minutes (Soaking in milk stops the eggplant from absorbing too much oil and becoming soggy –it is much healthier and tastier doing it this way) then coat lightly with flour to seal.

3. Pan-fry with half the olive oil for about 3 minutes each side.

4. With the whole capsicum, Cook skin side up under a hot grill, until the skin blackens. Place into a plastic bag and let it sweat before taking out and peeling the skin off. Cut the capsicum into large flat pieces, discarding the seeds and membrane then slice the flesh into strips.

5. In a bowl, mix the salt, cumin, and pepper together with the crumbled goats cheese, 6 of the semi-dried tomatoes sliced, crushed olives, and about 8 basil leaves.

6. On two large serving plates, place a slice of eggplant in the centre, top with 1/4 of the mixture on each serving then another eggplant layer, then top with the left over mix half on each before topping with the final piece of eggplant.

7. Coat the haloumi slices in the egg and fry until lightly golden brown and place one half on top of each of the stacks.

8. Place the remaining olive oil into a blender with the preserved lemon flesh and remaining semi-dried tomatoes and basil leaves, blend until smooth, Drizzle over the stack and serve.

Hassan has two bestselling cookbooks full of more delicious Moroccan recipes. If you enjoyed this recipe, try a few more! 

chef sydney australia Make it Moroccan copy

Moroccan Modern

Available on Amazon. Full of traditional Moroccan recipes, this cookbook is the perfect place to start.

Make it Moroccan

Available on Amazon. With adventurous ingredients and exciting flavors, Hassan’s second book is sure to give your kitchen an exotic makeover.

If you want the real thing, head to Hassan’s third and most successful restaurant, Out of Africa. It is featured in all of Sydney’s top food guides, and has an award list so long you could finish your Eggplant Stack in the time it takes for me to type them.

Lena Kazer

Lena is a Chicago native, her travel style consists of red cowboy boots that make her feel like she can take over the world. She adores Peru and can't travel without her journal to draw or write in.

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