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A-Z of Plantalicious Ingredients. A is for…Aubergine

Mr G and I always play some sort of silly made up holiday word game when we are away. Whilst in Istanbul this past weekend, he came up with the idea of an A-Z list of Plantalicious Ingredients.  We did a quick list and agreed that it was such a good idea that I should do a regular little spot on my website.  So here we go….
So – today – A is for Aubergine
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I love Aubergines (Eggplant in the US) as they are such a good versatile veggie.  You can stuff them, cook them in a ratatouille, a moussaka, puree them for a dip, roast them, smoke them.  From a mouth-feel perspective they are quite meaty and satisfying.
Let me share a culinary secret – Aubergines usually take a lot of cooking to soften them and that usually involves oil that they soak up like a sponge.  Often times cooks suggest salting them too. Life is too short for all this nonsense and both can be avoided if you have a microwave. Pierce the skin of the aubergines with the point of a sharp knife here and there and place in a microwave.  Cook on High for about 10-15 mins, depending on the wattage of your machine,  Check them after about 10 mins.  Allow them to cool or plunge in cold water.  They will shrivel up and their smooth outer skin will become wrinkled.  This means that they are pretty much cooked inside.  You can now use them in your favourite recipes or slice and stuff or scrape out the flesh etc.
A simple recipe – grill or griddle thick slices of the wilted Aubergine along with some bell pepper and fill a tortilla wrap for a filling snack.
What’s your favourite Aubergine recipe?
Do you have an Aubergine recipe you’d like given a Plantalicious make over?
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