Crispy aubergines with lentil tabbouleh
- June 2016
- Serves 4
- Hands-on time 45 min, simmering time 30 min, plus draining
This is a recipe where all the elements come together in perfect harmony: crispy spiced aubergines are served on a bed of fresh, herby tabbouleh and then drizzled in an indulgently thick tahini and yoghurt dressing. Serve it as a side or main course with bread – everyone will be racing to dig in.
- Vegetarian recipes
- 23.1g (3.8g saturated)
- 44.8g (14.3g sugars)
- 3 medium aubergines, sliced into 1cm discs
- Sunflower oil for frying
- Baharat spice mix (from Waitrose and Ocado) to sprinkle
For the tabbouleh
- 250g puy lentils
- Extra-virgin olive oil to dress
- 100g fresh curly leaf parsley, finely chopped
- 100g fresh mint, finely chopped
- 1 tbsp sumac (a sharp spice made from dried berries, from the spice section of large supermarkets)
- ½ red onion, finely chopped
- 4 large vine tomatoes, deseeded and finely chopped
- Handful shelled walnuts, toasted in a medium oven until fragrant, then finely chopped
For the dressing
- 200ml natural yogurt
- 2 tbsp tahini
- 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
- Juice 1 lemon
- ½ garlic clove, crushed
- For the tabbouleh, put the lentils in a pan with plenty of lightly salted water. Bring to the boil, then simmer for 25-30 minutes until cooked with a little bite. Drain, dress with a drizzle of oil and leave to cool to almost room temperature.
- Meanwhile, put the aubergines in a sieve, scatter with salt, then leave for 30 minutes to draw out the moisture, turning occasionally.
- Once the lentils have cooled, mix with the rest of the tabbouleh ingredients and set aside. In a separate small bowl, combine the ingredients for the dressing, then season to taste and set aside.
- To cook the aubergines, put the oven on its lowest setting to warm up. Spread out the aubergine slices on kitchen paper and pat dry (wipe off the salt). Heat around 1cm oil in a large frying or sauté pan and line a baking tray with more kitchen paper. When the oil is shimmering hot, carefully drop in just enough aubergine slices to cover the base of the pan without crowding – they should sizzle immediately. Cook for 2-3 minutes on each side until golden and crisp, then transfer to the lined baking tray. Sprinkle with a little spice mix and keep warm in the oven while you fry the rest, sprinkling each new batch lightly with spice mix as you go.
- Once all the aubergine slices are cooked, tip the tabbouleh onto a big serving plate, scatter the aubergines on top and serve with the yogurt dressing on the side.
If you can’t find baharat, use another spice blend such as za’atar or ras el hanout (from the spice section of large supermarkets). Or use ground cumin or smoked paprika.
Cook the lentils up to 8 hours in advance (step 1); cool, dress with a little oil, then cover and chill until needed. Make the dressing up to 12 hours ahead (step 3), then cover and chill until needed. Bring to room temperature to serve.
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