<preform>Aubergine & Walnut Salad</preform>

Serves 8 as mezedes
Click to follow
Indy Lifestyle Online

"We Greeks have a whole series of 'flexible' words. One of the most useful is 'salad'. In a Greek kitchen, even a dish made from whipped tarama paste is called 'taramasalata'. As ripe and glossy aubergines are one of the joys of late summer, and as an outdoor barbecue is the best way to give this dish that chargrilled flavour, it's best to save this salad-that-isn't-a-salad for the summer months."

"We Greeks have a whole series of 'flexible' words. One of the most useful is 'salad'. In a Greek kitchen, even a dish made from whipped tarama paste is called 'taramasalata'. As ripe and glossy aubergines are one of the joys of late summer, and as an outdoor barbecue is the best way to give this dish that chargrilled flavour, it's best to save this salad-that-isn't-a-salad for the summer months."

1kg (2lb) aubergines
55g (2oz) shelled walnuts
1 large shallot, very finely chopped
1 bunch spring onions, very finely chopped
1 bunch coriander, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, very finely chopped
4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
4 tsp lemon juice
Salt and pepper to taste

Cook the aubergines on the barbecue until the skin is burnt and the flesh is soft. Set them aside until they are cool enough to handle. Scoop out the flesh into a large bowl and discard the skin. If there are any aubergine juices left in the bowl, pass them through a sieve and add to the aubergine pulp. This liquid will give an extra hint of smokiness to the aubergine. (Alternatively, if you do not have an outdoor barbecue, slice the aubergines lengthways and approximately 1cm thick. Use a skillet to cook them until they are very soft. You will get an almost identical result.)

Preheat your oven to 180C/350F/gas mark 4. Toast the walnuts in the oven for about 10 minutes, then chop them roughly.

Mix the shallot, spring onions, coriander, garlic, olive oil and lemon juice together in a salad bowl. Add the aubergine, using a fork to break it up, then add the walnuts. Check and adjust the seasoning.

Comments