Grilled aubergine with feta, herbs and cumin infused dressing
I love the look of aubergine or eggplant, as it's called in some parts of the world. It has such a beautiful deep purple colour and I often find myself wanting to buy one and cook something with it, especially as aubergine is low FODMAP and tummy friendly. The problem is that I often don't know what to cook with it. I find the consistency can be soft and squishy when cooked, and I don't really like this. Adding aubergine to stew type dish is therefore not my thing. I've tried grilling my aubergine a few times and it's tasted ok, but as aubergine isn't very flavoursome in itself, just grilling it hasn't done much for my taste buds which is why I don't tend to buy aubergine that often.....until the other day when I came across this recipe by Kalyn at www.kalynskitchen.com. Her aubergine recipe is absolutely fantastic. The combination of grilled aubergine, mint, feta and a cumin infused dressing compliment each other so well and it's is a real winner. I just couldn't get enough and ate it all in one go. Kalyn has lots of other great gluten free, low-carb recipes on her website so go and check her out www.kalynskitchen.com
I've had to change the recipe a bit to make it low-FODMAP and gut friendly and I also changed the quantities as I only had one aubergine. You'll find my gut friendly adapted recipe below.
Here are some health benefits you can get from eating aubergine:
Aubergines are an excellent source of dietary fibre. They are also a good source of vitamins B1 and B6 and potassium. In addition it is high in the minerals copper, magnesium and manganese. Aubergines are rich in antioxidants, specifically nasunin found in aubergine skin - which gives it its purple colour.
- 1 large eggplant, cut in slices
- about 1 tsp salt, for salting the aubergine before cooking. (I think the salt really improves the flavour but you can skip it if you prefer)
- 1 tbsp olive oil, for brushing the aubergine slices
- 1 good handful of fresh mint leaves, chopped (Or use a mix of other fresh herb of your choice.)
- 1/4 cup (50-80 grams) crumbled Feta
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 1 spring onion (green part only) finely chopped/sliced
- 1/4 tsp ground cumin
- 1 pinch cayenne pepper
- 1/2 tsp all-purpose seasoning (can be left out)
- 2 tbsp garlic infused oil
- 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
- Slice the aubergine in 1 cm slices.
- Lay the aubergine slices out on kitchen paper towel and sprinkle with salt. on both sides. Let the aubergine sit for about 20 minutes, or until you see beads of water released. (You can skip this part if you prefer to to avoid using salt but it does make the aubergine extra tasty. Most of the last also gets wiped of after resting)
- While the aubergine rests, put salt, lemon juice, and spring onion into food processor and pulse until all ingredients are well combined, then let sit for 10 minutes. (You can also just combine the ingredients if you don't have access to a food processor). After ten minutes, put mixture in small bowl, stir in ground cumin, Cayenne pepper, and All Seasoning if using, then whisk in the garlic infused oil and the olive oil.
- Finely chop the fresh mint (or other herbs) and crumble the Feta
- Once the aubergine has rested for 20 minutes, wipe off the water (and salt) with dry kitchen paper towel and put it on a baking paper sheet. Brush aubergine slices with olive oil on both sides.
- Heat a griddle pan on high heat (you can also grill the aubergine on a BBQ). Place the aubergine slices in the pan. If you want criss-cross grill marks, grill the aubergine about 3-4 minutes, then check if brown. You might want to move them a little if you want a cross pattern, then cook about 3-4 minutes more.
- Turn aubergine over and cook 3-4 minutes more on the second side, or until cooked to your liking.
- Arrange aubergine on a serving tray and drizzle with cumin infused vinaigrette, then sprinkle the crumbled feta and herbs.