Heat the olive oil (2 tbsp) in a frying pan over medium heat and add the cubed aubergines and sliced mushrooms. Pour 60ml of boiling water over the vegetables and cover with a lid. Cook until all the water is absorbed. Stir well and add 60ml more boiling water. cook again until all the water is absorbed. Uncover and add all the salt and spices. Cook for a few minutes, stirring from time to time, until the vegetables are lightly browned. Set aside. Put the ground saffron in a small jar or cup
Lightly beat the eggs in a large bowl and mix with the remaining oil, lemon juice and yoghurt. Add the soaked saffron. Mix well. Set aside. Meanwhile, bring 2 litres of water to the boil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Put the rice in a bowl and cover with cold water. Stir gently but thoroughly and drain. Repeat several times until the water runs clear. Drain well. Add the salt and rice to the saucepan and stir gently. Bring back to the boil and cook for a few minutes until the rice
Fold the cooked rice into the yoghurt mixture gently with a large spoon.
Line a rectangular cake tin or oven dish with non-stick liner. Spread half the rice mixture in the bottom, keeping it from the unlined sides of the dish with the help of a spatula. Cover with an even layer of the aubergine and mushroom mixture, then the rest of the rice. Level the top and sides. Loosely cover with foil and put in the centre of the preheated oven. Bake for one hour. Uncover and bake for about forty five minutes or until there is a golden, lightly browned crust on the sides and to
Melt the butter in a small saucepan and add the barberries. Cook over medium-low heat for a couple of minutes until the barberries are shiny and a little puffed up. They burn easily so be careful not to cook too long or on very high heat.
Make sure the rice is not sticking to the sides of the dish. You can use a knife to loosen it from the sides. Place a large tray (or platter or chopping board) on top of the baking dish and holding tight with both hands turn to release the cake onto the tray. Peel off the liner. Garnish the cake with the barberries and serve with a chopped tomato, cucumber and onion salad dressed with lemon juice and olive oil.