Salad because its nearly summer

Summer is so nearly here – even in Dunedin land. That means BBQs, Pimms, stone fruit, shorts for some and for me I go crazy and breakout the merino leggings to replace the jeans. Summer also means salads.

I like my salads to be a bit like my chocolate – substantial. While the good old lettuce salad is easy to whip up it can get a little boring….Much like Shortland street at the moment…

So why not go crazy and make an eggplant salad…Nuts I know.

Eggplants are fricking painful to cook if you don’t know what you are doing (which is me always). Every time I come back from the Supermarket (which is daily) with eggplants a look of terror flashes across my husband’s face. I am pretty sure I see his life flash before his eyes as he remembers past eggplant episodes. Fear not my friends! I have actually read about cooking these crazy items and have succeeded in making an edible dish! Rejoice one and all!!!! Apparently reading recipes can be helpful.

This recipe is adapted from the new cookbook from Ima – a super cool restaurant in Auckland that I love and miss with all my heart (not even exaggerating)… Her recipe is more complex and has nicer additions but I have lazy-fied it because I am a sloth reincarnated as a semi functioning person.

Anyway have a go at this dish – it is good for you and super easy and may even grace the Christmas table this year because CHRISTMAS IS COMING! Oh the excitement.

What you need:

2 eggplants

Salt (quite a bit to cover the eggplants)

1/2 cup balsamic vinegar

2 big handfuls of mint

2 big handfuls of parsley

1/4 cup olive or coconut oil

What to do:

Slice your eggplants relatively thin and place on a rack. Cover pretty well with salt and let the water drain off. Leave for at least 15 minutes. Do both sides. Don’t try and multi task and watch Gilmore girls while slicing. Having fingers is apparently important in life.

Rinse the eggplant off in water and squeeze out any excess fluid out.

Place on a lined baking tray and coat with either olive oil or coconut oil and grill until brown. Flip and do the other side as well.

Put the balsamic vinegar in a small saucepan and heat on a low heat and let it reduce to thick. Should reduce quite a bit (leave on stove for about 10 minutesish).

Cut up the mint and parsley. Mix everything together.

Ta da. That is it. Easy ah. This will give two people a pretty decent portion but to make more just double the recipe. Now all that is left to do is start your internet Christmas shopping for the most important people in your life or just yourself I’m not going to judge…

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