Tuesday, 27 July 2010

Roast aubergine salad with goats cheese & toasted pita bread

You probably know that feeling when you look forward seeing somebody who is very important to you and you are so excited that you cannot sleep, counting down the hours too your journey and the meeting.

Although sometimes something unforeseen can happen that puts this moment away in time. You get more anxious and grab a mobile phone and ring to say you will be late. That important person on the other side of the phone switches the hob off. And waits patiently.

When you finally get there and give this person a biggest hug that you possibly can, talk as much as possible on our way home and next thing to do is to have a meal together. There is nothing better in this world than tasty meal after a tiring journey prepared by someone that you love or prepared by yourself for someone who was travelling to see you. It does not matter – both ways are simply great and satisfying! It is very comforting to sit on the sofa with that person, have a cup of homemade tomato soup, lovely salad and you favourite Chilean cabernet sauvignon.

This is how I felt on Friday and this is why I wanted this salad again and again when I came back home. Simply because I wanted to keep the feeling as long as possible even if that person is far away from me today. Thank you very much for this weekend, my dear Sister.

I have modified a recipe from "Good Food”, August 2010 issue
Serves 2 for dinner or 4 for appetizer

2 medium aubergines
3 tbsp olive oil
handful fresh mint, chopped
shallot, finely chopped
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
half tsp of agava syrup or honey
small red chilli, chopped
100g mixed leaves – I used spinach, watercress and rocket
3 tomatoes, each divided into eight pieces
125g goats cheese (I used Welsh goats cheese, quite soft and crumbly)
2 wholegrain pita breads, cut into bite size pieces
freshly ground black pepper

Heat the oven to 180C.

Cut the aubergine in half lengthwise and slice each part. Place on a tray lined with baking paper, drizzle with 1 tbsp olive oil, season with salt and pepper and roast for about 15-20 minutes turning halfway through. Remove from the oven and turn the temperature down to 150C.

Place tomatoes on the baking tray lined with some paper and roast until the skin becomes bit wrinkly. Turn them halfway through.

Grill pita bread under a hot grill until crisp.

For the dressing, in a bowl, mix the vinegar, mint, agava syrup, shallots, chilli, remaining oil and some salt and pepper.

Mix the salad leaves with roasted aubergine and arrange on the plates. Place tomatoes and pita bread on the top, crumble some cheese on top and pour over the dressing.

It is very nice when still warm, but cold taste good too.

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