Whilst it might seem a cliche, since Mr. Giraffe became vegetarian we’ve been eating a lot more aubergine, a lot of people describe it as being meaty – although I don’t really see that – but it is very substantial which means it is easy to make it the centre of a meal.
This is my ‘sort of’ sea spiced aubergine, it is probably not very authentic but it has all the right mix of flavours – deep savoury, chilli burn and a little sweetness. This always takes me longer to make than I think, due to the fact that aubergines take SO LONG to roast. After they are roasted the dish comes together pretty quickly though.
Sea Spiced Aubergine – serves 2
2 medium sized aubergines
2 fresh chillies
For the sauce
2 tablespoons of dark soy sauce
2 teaspoons of Tamari (or just add in another tablespoon of dark soy sauce)
2 teaspoons of chili bean paste (or any good chilli sauce, or sambal oelek)
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 inch piece of ginger, grated
1 teaspoon of sesame oil
2 teaspoons of honey
juice of 1/2 a lime
Heat the oven to 180 degrees c / gas mark 4.
Line a baking dish with foil and wrap your aubergines and chillies up in the foil, drizzle with sunflower or a mild olive oil before you seal. Roast in the oven for about an hour to an hour and a half, about half way through remove the chilis and turn the aubergines. Slice the chillies in to small pieces. If you don’t want too much heat you can use 1 chilli, or leave the seeds out.
For the sauce mix all the ingredients together in a bowl with the roasted chillies.
When the aubergines are ready, remove from the dish and let them cool so they aren’t going to burn your hands off when you slice them. They should be very very soft and collapsed slightly.
Cut your aubergine into rough chunks, about 2 inches.
Heat up a large frying pan or a wok, add in some sunflower oil and then your aubergines. Fry for a minute and then pour in your sauce, followed by a little hot water if it is a bit dry. Simmer for 5-10 minutes on a medium to low heat.
Serve with egg fried rice or fine egg noodles.