Grilled aubergine salad

Not really intended for the summer, but very successful even with bbq meat on hot summer evening. In the winter I also tried baking my eggplant in the oven instead of BBQ, the effect was not as smoky, but also very good.

Serves 4

  • 1kg/2¼lb eggplants
  • 5-6 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, cut into thin slivers
  • 1 tsp coriander seeds, roughly ground
  • 2 tsp cumin seeds, freshly ground
  • 1 large tomato, skinned and chopped
  • 1½ tsp sweet paprika
  • 5 tbsp roughly chopped fresh flat leaf parsley
  • 6 tbsp roughly chopped fresh coriander
  • 1½ tbsp lemon juice
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  1. Grill the eggplants whole over a hot barbecue, directly on the naked flame of a gas hob, or under the grill, turning until the skin of the eggplants is charred and crispy all over and the flesh is soft.
  2. Remove from the heat.
  3. When cool enough to handle, cut off the tops and peel off the skin, scraping the flesh off the back of the skin if necessary.
  4. Roughly chop the eggplant and set aside on the chopping board.
  5. Place a large frying pan or saucepan over a medium to high heat.
  6. Add the oil and when it is hot but not smoking, add the garlic.
  7. Fry for a few seconds until it begins to color, then add the coriander and cumin seeds.
  8. Stir a little and cook for a further 10-20 seconds to bring out the flavour of the spices, then add the chopped eggplant, tomato, paprika, parsley, three tablespoons of the fresh coriander, and finally the lemon juice.
  9. Give everything a thorough stir so that all the ingredients are evenly mixed.
  10. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
  11. Turn the heat to low and continue to cook for 20-30 minutes, stirring every five minutes to scrape off any caramelized bits that have stuck to the bottom of the pan. The eggplant is ready when it is no longer watery.
  12. To finish, stir in the remaining coriander and taste for seasoning once more.
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