Aubergine/Eggplant Salad

This is the most exquisite salad that’s part of Romanian cuisine. Any self-respecting Romanian cherishes this dish so it seems only fair to dedicate post #1 to the queen of our Romanian hearts (or stomachs), the eggplant/aubergine salad!

Step 1: cooking the aubergines

"Grilling" them outside might be a good idea to prevent the smell from remaining in your kitchen

You can cook (or better yet fry) the aubergines in many ways. You can

use a pan and the grill-mode of an oven, you can use any kind of grate

placed on the stove, or you can even use an outside grill. You just need to place

the aubergines on the heated surface and wait until they become moist and                 wrinkled on the side which is in direct contact to the heat. Turn the aubergines         on each side until they have the same texture on all sides.

What happens is that due to the hard peel of the eggplant, the inside warms up           and gets cooked under pressure. At some point small cracks may appear and            water is sure to drip from inside.

Not to worry. Just continue cooking them until they’re all moist and soft on the        inside (check by slowly pressing on the peel). However, if you choose to                       cook them on a pan or a tray, make sure you’re not sentimentally attached to it.It   may easily get damaged.

They're look great, almost done

You may find different methods and suggestions regarding this step. Some prefer to cut the green part of the aubergine so it cooks better.
Experiments with this idea proved that there is some inconvenience to
this method. One is that excessive juices from inside the eggplant may
drip while cooking, if the green part is not cut at a right size.
Second is that while cooking you may find it difficult to grip the
aubergines when you want to turn them. Here is where the green part
comes in handy, giving you the possibility to manipulate the
vegetables while cooking.

Step 2: peeling the aubergines

Once you have your aubergines well cooked, you need to peel them.

This process may be somewhat uncomfortable due to the fact that the inside
of the aubergines is very hot and cools down very slowly. What you need to do is peel            them under the tap with cold water flowing on your finger so you don’t get burned.

You will find that the peel comes off rather easily and the process is shorter compared to      the cooking. However, don’t hurry. Make sure you get every little bit of the peel off.

If  there is peel in the salad, you will have some bitter bites when you eat it.

Step 3: the chopping

Use a cutting board and a good long knife. What you need to do is to chop the cooked, peeled aubergines very finely using swift movements of the knife. If the aubergine is properly cooked, you will discover that chopping them is not problem.

You will stop chopping once the aubergine has turned into a homogeneous creamy paste, which you place into a pot or bowl, and continue with chopping the second aubergine and so on.

Step 4: mixing ingredients.

You can either chop the onion finely or you can use a grater. If you use a grater be sure to use a sieve in order to drain most of the water from the onion. You don’t want your eggplant salad to be too moist. Second, use the recipe for home-made mayonnaise (you can find that in the next post) to make as much as you need for the salad, and mix all of the 3 ingredients, add salt, and finally mix it well.



One response to “Aubergine/Eggplant Salad

  1. I haven’t read this post (so you might have mentioned it), but this too I made last night and what I did was leaving the egg-plants in the oven for 2 hrs at 180 degrees. That saves you from peeling and chopping. You just slice an opening into them and then carve the “flesh” out of them. 🙂

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