RECIPE / Aubergine keeps cool

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Indy Lifestyle Online
THE first of our summer dishes is from Mike Harrison, a British Council employee, who sent this recipe for aubergines from the heat of Latvia. It is, however, a dish, which Mr Harrison 'picked up while working as a school inspector in the Sultanate of Oman'. If that isn't enough place-dropping, the dish is, he says, Sudanese. He will receive a bottle of Sancerre Rose Les Romaines 1992 Vacheron, an elegant Loire from Reid Wines of Hallatrow, near Bristol.

Bitinjen ou laban

(aubergine with yoghurt)

Serves 4 as snack

Ingredients:

2 small or 1 large aubergine

2-3tbs olive oil

1 large clove of garlic, minced

3 tbs chopped coriander

4tbs heaped thick Greek yoghurt

Preparation: Peel aubergines. If using young ones, the flesh will not be bitter and these may simply be sliced and cooked. For older fruit, purge the bitter juices by cutting the aubergine into medium thick slices (about 12), arranging around the sides of a colander and salting generously. Let stand for 1 hour, then pat dry. Combine yoghurt, garlic and 2tbs of chopped coriander in a bowl big enough to contain the aubergine.

Preheat oven to 350F/180C/Gas 4. On the stovetop, heat 2tbs olive oil in a large frying pan until it is evenly distributed, and an aromatic haze rises. If the aubergine has not been purged, salt the slices now. Add them to pan, reduce heat and cook evenly, until tender. Decant aubergines to bowl, toss in yoghurt and arrange over a grill rack in a roasting pan. Bake for 15-20 minutes on a medium shelf. Garnish with remaining coriander or return and toss with the yoghurt. Serve with fresh lime.

NEXT week, more summer food. Recipes (stating any source) are welcome for our new category, peppers, sent to: Emily Green, Recipe, Weekend Features, The Independent, 40 City Road, London EC1Y 2DB. Those whose recipes we print will receive a bottle of 1992 Wyken Auxerrois from Suffolk.

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