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Grilled Aubergine

Vegan recipe: Grilled aubergine with peanut, tamarind and chilli

A tasty vegan recipe for those struggling with ideas for the last remaining days of Veganuary

Recipe for four from chef Vivek Singh, of the Cinnamon Collection which consists of The Cinnamon Club, Cinnamon Kitchen City, Battersea & Oxford and Cinnamon Bazaar.

Ingredients:
  • 4 firm Japanese or Bengali aubergines, cut into halves lengthways
  • 1tbsp vegetable or corn oil
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp red chilli powder
  • ½ tsp turmeric powder
  • ¼ tsp carom seeds
  • ¼ tsp black onion seeds
  • ¼ tsp fennel seeds

Tamarind smear

  • 6 tbsp tamarind
  • Pinch ground red chilli
  • 2 tbsp jaggery or molasses
  • ½ cup of water

For the spice crust

  • 50g peanut, roasted or fried, cooled and coarsely crushed
  • 1 tbsp white sesame seeds, lightly roasted
  • 5g jaggery
  • 1 tsp chopped garlic fried crisp
  • ½ tsp red chilli powder
  • ½ tsp of dried fenugreek leaves, crushed
  • 1 tsp chaat masala
Method:

1. Score and marinate the aubergine with oil, salt, red chilli powder, turmeric, carom seeds, onion seeds, fennel seeds and salt and keep it aside for 3-4 minutes.
In the meanwhile, combine all the ingredients for the spice crust to obtain a spicy nut mix. Check seasoning and keep aside.

2. Place the flat side of the aubergine on a hot grill or pan and sear for 2 minutes. Repeat the same on the other side by brushing it with butter or oil and cooking it for about 3 minutes so that it gets cooked thoroughly.
Alternatively you could do this on a very hot grill or barbeque too.

3. Place them on a plate with the flat side facing upwards. Apply a smear of tamarind chutney on the aubergines, sprinkle the spicy peanut crust on them and serve hot with green salad.