Serves 4-6

I named the dish after Dame Carcas, the Saracen queen after whom the region is named. My husband invented the dish though, and all the ingredients come from the garden - well, apart from the two tins.

One final note, I find it doesn't need any salt as the garlic oil brings out the flavour.

500g big round tomatoes
3-4 sweet peppers (red, orange or yellow)
1 large white onion
3 shallots
1 aubergine
2 medium courgettes
1 small tin of green lentils (cooked)
1 tin haricot blanc
3tbsp olive oil
Black pepper
2tbsp garlic oil

Dice the onion very finely, and heat gently in the oil. Shred the peppers and lay them as a layer on top of the onion. Peel and slice the courgettes into rounds and add as a third layer. Peel, cube and salt the aubergine and leave for 5 minutes. Blanche and skin the tomatoes, then quarter and deseed. Add the aubergine, then the tomatoes, as two layers. Cover and simmer. Then it's very important to a get glass of rosé and sit in the sun for 45 minutes. After that, take the pan off the heat and let it stand for half an hour. Then, 10 minutes before you want to eat, add the lentils and beans, bring to a boil and stir. Season with pepper and make a little pool of garlic oil on top and eat with crusty bread, and sauté potatoes.

Kate Mosse's new novel is 'Labyrinth' (Orion, £9.99)

Comments