Diana Henry’s butter-roast aubergines and tomatoes with freekeh and koch-kocha

Diana Henry’s butter-roast aubergines and tomatoes with freekeh and koch-kocha
  • Serves icon Serves four
  • Time icon 10-15 minutes hands-on time, 40 minutes cooking time

Taken from Dianry Henry’s latest book; From The Oven To The Table, this roasted aubergine and tomato dish makes a seriously tasty supper, especially when mopped up with a good quality loaf of bread.

Why not serve this dish as part of a vibrant mezze spread?


For the vegetables and freekeh

  • 1kg baby aubergines
  • 1kg plum tomatoes (you can use a mixture of
    colours – red, green and yellow – as long as they are
    about the same size)
  • 100g unsalted butter
  • 12 garlic cloves, not too finely sliced
  • Sea salt flakes and freshly ground black pepper
  • A little soft light brown sugar (optional, only if your
    tomatoes aren’t sweet)
  • 250g cooked freekeh
  • Natural yogurt, to serve
  • Good bread, to serve

For the koch-kocha

  • ½ green pepper, halved, deseeded and roughly chopped
  • 50g coriander leaves
  • 1 red chilli and 1 green chilli, halved and deseeded
  • 3cm fresh root ginger, peeled and finely grated
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • ½ tablespoon cider vinegar, or white wine vinegar
  • 1 garlic clove, finely grated
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground cardamom seeds
  • ¼ teaspoon crushed grains of paradise
  • ½ teaspoon crushed ajwain
  • 100ml extra virgin olive oil


  1. Preheat the oven to 190C/fan 170C/ gas 6. Pierce each aubergine with the tip of a knife – you don’t have to remove the tops – and cut the tomatoes in half. Put them into a roasting tin or a shallow casserole dish 30cm (12inches) in diameter. They don’t have to quite lie in a single layer but they should almost do so.
  2. Melt the butter in a saucepan and add the garlic. Cook over a low heat for a few minutes, then pour the butter all over the vegetables, turning them over. Season and sprinkle each tomato half with a little sugar if they aren’t very sweet. If you have great tomatoes, you won’t need it.
  3. Roast for 30 minutes, turning the aubergines over once during this time.
  4. For the koch-kocha sauce, simply put everything into a food processor and whizz until smooth.
  5. Add the freakeh to the roasting tin, pushing it down under the vegetables (you don’t want it sprinkled on top of them). Return to the oven for a final 5-10 minutes, or until the tomatoes are caramelised, the aubergines are tender right through and the freekeh has become slightly sticky at the edges.
  6. Serve the dish with the sauce, a big bowl of natural yoghurt and good bread.

delicious. tips

  1. If you can’t get your hands on grains of paradise for the koch-kocha, some bashed caraway seeds will do.

Recipe By

Diana Henry


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