Eggplant with turmeric-tahini yoghurt

Hey there, remember me?!

While I have been MIA on the blog front, real life has been rather busy for me in Brooklyn.

Two weeks ago, the US edition of Neighborhood (no ‘u’, okay?) was finally released. Such a dream come true for me, to share my salad recipes with a whole new audience. I’m proudly flying the Aussie-Veggie flag over here and doing my best to seduce more peeps with my sassy salad recipes. If you would like a copy, purchase here. And if you love the book, I would appreciate a review on Amazon (these things matter I’ve been told ;))

 
USA edition of Neighborhood

USA edition of Neighborhood

 

The ongoing book tour will take me from New York to Seattle in early August, where I will be hosting a one-time only brunch with Cannelle et Vanille’s Aran Goyoaga at her Seattle studio. The brunch is on the 12th August and I will be cooking salads from Neighborhood to share in an intimate, family-style dining setting. If you are in Seattle, I’d love to meet you - there are just a few tickets left - purchase them here.

There are several other events in New York over late summer – including a collab brunch called "Leaf on Loaf" with Sarah Owens in the Rockaways –  I hope to meet many of you there and what a great opportunity to discover the unique Summer food scene in the Rockaways. Purchase tickets here and see all my other events here (I will add to this list as new events come to light). Busy fun cooking days ahead ;)

I’ve also been working on a special project with my good friend Jodi. This is a test kitchen in the heart of Brooklyn, which will serve as a daylight photography studio for both of us, while also serving as a space where the food community in New York come together to create, cook and eat. We call it a ‘collaborative cooking’ space. In many ways, it will be the physical manifestation of my commitment to creating community around small food experiences. We hope the space will be opened by late summer but to stay up to date, visit our website here and sign up for updates. You can also find us on Instagram @neighborhoodstudiobk

With Summer in full swing over here, I’m swooning for all things eggplant right now. It all started a month or so ago when I scoffed an intensely delicious plate of pasta alla norma at a local Italian restaurant. Since then, I have been obsessed with these plump, shiny skinned nightshades. Lately I’ve been making the smoky baba ghanoush from Community, and the smashed eggplant and caponata from Neighbo(u)rhood. I’ve also devised this new eggplant recipe, which is a light dish for warm nights. It features barbecued eggplant, smothered in golden turmeric yoghurt and pomegranates, served with brown rice (or your fave grain). A vibrantly hued, simple-to-prepare bowl for easy veggie weeknight dinners.

 

Photo ©Luisa Brimble, outtake from Neighborhood cookbook shoot

Photo ©Luisa Brimble, outtake from Neighborhood cookbook shoot

Eggplant with turmeric-tahini yoghurt

gluten free

for vegan, omit feta and replace yogurt with tahini in equal quantities

 

Serves 4

 

3 medium eggplant (about 800g), trimmed

2 tbsp olive oil

3-4 cups cooked brown rice

2 (tightly packed) cups baby rocket (arugula) or spinach leaves

¼ (tightly packed) cup mint leaves

100g feta, crumbled

1 tbsp toasted sesame seeds (white, black or both)

½ pomegranate, seeds removed

Sea salt and black pepper

 

Turmeric tahini yoghurt

1/3 cup yogurt 

1 tbsp water

1 tsp maple syrup

1 tbsp tahini

1 tbsp olive oil

1/2 tsp turmeric

sea salt and black pepper, to taste

 

To make the turmeric yoghurt, combine the yoghurt and water and mix until smooth. You are looking for the consistency of thick cream – if it is too thick, slowly add more water, a teaspoon at a time. Add the maple, tahini, olive oil and turmeric, and stir to combine. Season with sea salt and black pepper.

Slice the eggplant into 1cm thick slices and coat in the olive oil. Heat up the barbecue (or a griddle pan on the stovetop), and char-grill the eggplant for 2-3 minutes on each side until soft and cooked through. Sprinkle over sea salt and set aside to cool slightly.

In a large bowl, add a big spoonful (or two) of brown rice, toss in a handful of rocket and spinach, a scatter of mint leaves and top with a few slices of eggplant. Spoon over some turmeric yogurt, and scatter over the feta, sesame seeds and pomegranate seeds. Serve immediately.