Crispy eggplant is wonderfully paired with fennel yoghurt in this flavourful vegetarian dish.
Fresh from the garden: eggplant, coriander seed, lemon, eggs
Recipe source: adapted from a recipe by Russell Norman of Polpo restaurants
Serves: 6 or 30 tastes
For the fennel yoghurt
· 1 teaspoon coriander seed
· 1 teaspoon fennel seed
· 200g Greek yoghurt
· 125g mayonnaise
· ½ a lemon
· A large pinch of sea salt
· Black pepper
For the eggplant chips
· 2 teaspoon coriander seeds
· 2 teaspoon fennel seeds
· 100g plain flour
· 1 teaspoon fine salt
· 3 medium free-range eggs
· 150g panko breadcrumbs
· 2 teaspoon sesame seeds
· 2 eggplant
· Rice Bran oil, for deep frying
What to do:
- Toast both lots of coriander and fennel seeds by putting all 6 teaspoons in a non-stick frying pan and dry frying gently for a few minutes until you can smell them. Remove and grind in a mortar and pestle.
- For the yoghurt: Add 2 teaspoons of the ground seeds to the yoghurt. Squeeze the lemon to yield 1 teaspoon juice and combine with the remaining yoghurt ingredients.
- For the eggplant chips: Wash the eggplants and wipe dry. Slice the eggplants into 10cm long chips, approximately ½ cm wide. Mix the flour, salt and grind of pepper in a bowl. In a second bowl beat the eggs. In a third bowl mix the breadcrumbs, the remaining ground seeds and the sesame seeds.
- Dip the eggplant chips in the flour and cover well. Shake off the excess and then dip into the egg and shake off any drips and finally coat in the breadcrumbs. Set aside on a baking tray.
- Heat the oil in a deep-sided, heavy bottomed pan to 190C, or until a breadcrumb sizzles and turns golden-brown when dropped into it. CAUTION: hot oil can be dangerous. Do not over-fill the pan or leave unattended. Fry the eggplant in batches for 2-3 minutes until golden-brown. Remove and drain on paper towel.
- Divide into bowls, sprinkle with flaked salt and serve with the fennel yoghurt on the side.
Notes: What is eggplant also known as? Why do we need to be careful with hot oil?