Isn't there anything else to eat?
I've lost count of the times I've heard this reaction when I've told people we're having aubergines for dinner (if you're scrunching up your nose and wondering what aubergines are, you probably call them eggplant). It seems as though this plant - often served up brown and mushy - isn't the most loved in the veggie patch.
I'm on a mission to change this. I've got several aubergine recipes which have become hugely popular in my house and if you try them, I'm sure they will restore this vegetable to its rightful place up near the top of your list of favourite foods.
I'm sharing the first of those with you today. It's adapted from Yotam Ottolenghi's fantastic cookbook of Middle Eastern inspired recipes 'Plenty'.
2 large and long aubergines
80ml olive oil
1 and a half tsp lemon thyme leaves, plus a few whole sprigs to garnish (I often substitute ordinary thyme here)
Dried pomegranate seeds (the original recipe asks for 1 whole pomegranate but when I couldn't find any in the shops, these were just as good. Crunchy too.)
Salt and black pepper
1 small bunch of coriander (about 10 sprigs)
1 small bunch of basil (about 10 sprigs)
Half of a red chilli
2 tbsp olive oil
100g Greek yoghurt
1 and a half tbsp olive oil
1 small garlic clove, crushed
Pinch of salt
Taste this once and you'll never say 'ugh' to aubergines again. That's a promise.