March 12, 2007

Food Bloggers Have Yet To Let Me Down

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Aubergine sounds so much more sophisticated than eggplant. Calling this dish Aubergine Tartere takes it to a whole other level. I’d like to say I was the genius behind this, but I’m definitely not. Nope, this is another post that’s all about sharing the love, so if you’re sensing a little déjà vu, there’s a reason for it. Last week I was going through my regular blog reading when I came across a recipe for Caramelized Aubergine Tartare with Curried Nuts by Johanna of The Passionate Cook. And wouldn’t you know it, I had an eggplant, excuse me, aubergine, sitting on my counter just waiting to be used. Eggplant isn’t something I use very often, mainly because I don’t really know how to cook it. I like to eat it though. The trouble with cooking it is that both its forte and downfall seem to be that it acts like a sponge and soaks up whatever’s nearby. That could be oil or it could be sauce. Eggplant that’s oil soaked and soggy is not a good thing. No worries, that’s not the case with this recipe. It also gets bonus points for esthetics. Of course my version has a few changes because I have a hard time following directions, but visually they turned out pretty similar. Alright, who's got another recipe for me to try?

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Caramelised aubergine tartare à la Bri (Adapted from The Passionate Cook)

1 medium aubergine (aka eggplant)
1 tbsp olive oil
2 big cloves of garlic (thinly sliced)
1 shallot, thinly sliced
1 tbsp sugar
2 tsp garam masala
1 ½ tbsp shallot red wine vinegar
2 dashes of Sriracha chili sauce
salt, pepper
2 tbsp goats cheese
12 roasted cherry tomatoes

Half the aubergine, then cut 2 thin slices from the middle. Make sure they're as even as possible. Dice the rest of the aubergine (cubes of less than 1 cm) and rest in a bowl with salted water for about 10 minutes.
Heat olive oil in a non-stick pan, add the garlic, garam masala and shallot and cook until starting to brown lightly. Add the drained aubergines and the sugar, then cook for about 10 minutes, with the lid on.

When the aubergines are done, season with salt, pepper, vinegar and chili sauce, then set aside. In the same frying pan, cook the aubergine slices without adding any oil until soft and starting to brown.
Divide the aubergine tartare between two plates and wrap and aubergine slice around each. Top with a roasted tomato and goats cheese. Decorate with remaining roasted tomatoes.

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Marce said...

this looks delicious, Bri. I love to cook with eggplants, though this year they have been treating me badly and going a bit bitter on me at times.
As for the recipes for you to try... so many, just pick whichever you like (though I feel my alfajores de maizena particularly have your name written all over them ;)

christine said...

Oohh those are so pretty! I love eggplantsm but I've never had them that way. I actually got used to calling them aubergines while living in London (and bell peppers as capsicum etc.). Are you looking for more eggplant recipes?

Ellie said...

This looks fantastic! And I'm in the same boat as you in regards to eggplant - love love love to eat the stuff, but no idea how to cook it!

Lydia said...

Eggplant consumes an almost limitless amount of oil, if you let it -- I like this recipe because it forces you to cook the eggplant until it's fairly dry. And it looks lovely on the plate, too.

Freya and Paul Erickson said...

I love all your a la Bri recipes!

sher said...

The color in those pictures is incredible. The red tomatoes look positively voluptuous! And it also looks delicious! :):)

Lis said...

I heart eggplant too.. I've cooked with it a few times (mostly just rollatini and parmesan) and it gets easier to work with it after a few tries. Your lil Aubergine Tartare(s) are adorable and they sound mighty tasty! I know I'd be happy if they were in front of me! :D

If you want a really easy eggplant recipe - pretty much no fail.. I've got one for a deep dish eggplant parmesan pizza, if you're interested. ;)

tigerfish said...

I reckon soaking in salt water will make the eggplant less "absorbant" to oil? I don't really fancy eggplants all this while because of the "oil" factor and it turns slimy when oil is absorbed :O

Annie said...

What a fantastic presentation. I thought for sure this was a complicated recipe until I read it. I can't believe how simple it is to make. Great job!

Annie said...

What a fantastic presentation. I thought for sure this was a complicated recipe until I read it. I can't believe how simple it is to make. Great job!

mae said...

I love aubergine and can never get enough of it. Your first photo looks very enticing! Great colours.

Ok, you win! I'm going to have some fried or grilled aubergine tonight with some 'nam prik kapi'. One of my comfort food. :)


Peabody said...

You're such a theif :)

Kristen said...

So fancy! What an elegant dish.