For a perfect dish, suitable for even the fussiest of eaters, totally vegan free and absolutely delicious, you can’t go past this Moorish aubergine plate from Jose Pizarro. Full of flavour and looking even more impressive, this dish, both Moorish and moreish, is now firmly on the Elldrew favourite list for future entertaining.
- 2 large aubergines
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 200 ml red wine vinegar
- 40g caster sugar
- 6 tbs olive oil
- 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped or minced
- 1 medium-hot red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
- 2 tbsp chopped fresh mint, plus whole leaves to decorate
- A handful of pomegranate seeds, to decorate
- Cut the aubergines into ~1cm thick slices. Lightly sprinkle both sides with salt and set aside to draw out the moisture, for around 30 minutes.
- In the meantime, combine the red wine vinegar and sugar into a small pan and boil vigorously until reduced, by 3/4s to around 50 ml. Remove from heat.
- In a small frying pan add 2 tablespoons of olive oil and the garlic and start to heat up on a medium/low temperature, to infuse the oil. As soon as the garlic begins to sizzle, add the chilli and cook until the garlic is lightly golden (only a minute or so).
- Quickly remove from heat and stir into the vinegar reduction. Doing this will quickly cool the oil and stop the garlic burning; left alone the hot oil will continue to cook the garlic.
- Once the dressing’s made and the aubergine slices have rested, heat up a dry griddle pan until it’s smoking hot, then reduce to a medium heat.
- Pat the aubergine slices dry with kitchen paper, brushing off any excess salt.
- Brush the aubergine with the remaining oil on each side and place flat on the griddle for around 3 minutes each side, until they’re tender and nicely browned (you may need to do them in batches).
- Arrange the aubergine slices on a serving platter. Stir the chopped mint into the dressing and spoon the mixture over the aubergines.
- Sprinkle around the mint leaves and pomegranate seeds to decorate.
- Serve warm (but they’re equally nice at room temperature).
Perfect for light lunches, salads, BBQs…oh who are we kidding, they go with virtually anything and believe us, they will go, fast!