Salad of grilled aubergines with garlic cream dressing and basil

Starter: Serves 2. Total time: 40 mins
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Indy Lifestyle Online
A lovely thing for a weekend lunch eaten out of doors.

1 large aubergine, peeled and cut into thick-ish slices
salt and pepper
12 garlic cloves, peeled
fruity olive oil
juice of ½ small lemon
10-12 basil leaves
a little extra olive oil

Lightly salt both sides of the aubergine slices and put into a colander to drain for 30 minutes. Rinse briefly and pat dry with kitchen paper. Put the garlic cloves in a small pan and cover with cold water. Bring to the boil and drain. Refresh with cold water, again, to cover, add a little salt and simmer until very tender. Drain once more and then purée in a food processor with the lemon juice, seasoning to taste, and 4-5 tablespoons of olive oil, added while the motor is running as if making mayonnaise. Once you are happy with the consistency – sort of sloppy but just pourable – check for seasoning and reserve.

Brush the aubergines with olive oil and – using a ribbed, cast-iron, stove-top affair – gently grill them on both sides until cooked through but only lightly burnished by the bars beneath. Lay them on to two plates. Spoon the garlic sauce over them and place a basil leaf on to each slice. Anoint with a little extra olive oil and serve warm.

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