An easy and very yummy vegetarian main course, that even your meat eater friends will wanna have the recipe…
- 750 g aubergines
- 100 ml groundnut or vegetable oil
- 6 ears of corn (about 750 g sweetcorn kernels)
- 50 g butter
- 75 g black sesame seeds (from Asian supermarkets)
- 2 tablespoons mirin
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1-1 1/2 tablespoons light brown sugar
- 1 tablespoons rice vinegar (I used black rice vinegar, but white would be fine)
- Sea salt and black pepper.
- 2 spring onions, finely sliced
- Ricotta or fresh goats cheese
1. Preheat oven to 200 C. Cut aubergine into 2.5 cm cubes and toss well with the oil and a pinch of salt in a roasting tin and roast, tossing every now and then for about 30-45 minutes or until very tender.
2. To make the corn polenta, pull off the green outer husks from the corn if they are wearing them, and pull away the inner silks. (the silky stringy threads under the leaves.) then slice off the kernels off from top to bottom.
3. Place the corn kernels in a large pan with a litre of water, the butter and a pinch of salt. Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat and simmer for about 15-20 minutes or until tender.
4. Drain the corn, reserving the water and pour this water back into the pan. Tip the kernels into the bowl of a food processor and whiz until as smooth as possible, adding a little of the cooking water so you get a smooth paste.
5. Scrape the corn paste into the pan of reserved cooking water and bring to a boil, reduce heat again, and simmer gently, stirring frequently, for about 15 minutes or until the mixture thickens to a thick creamy mash.
6. Meanwhile, to make the black sesame sauce, tip the sesame seeds into a dry frying pan and toast tossing frequently for a few minutes, or until you can smell them toasting and they change colour slightly. (don’t let them burn) Tip onto a plate and leave to cool.
7. Reserve 3 tablespoons of the sesame seeds and tip the rest into the bowl of a food processor or spice grinder, and grind until the texture is like black sand. Tip into a large serving bowl, then stir in the mirin, soy, sugar, and rice vinegar. Adjust to taste, (it needs to be a good balance of sweet and sour.) stir in the aubergine pieces and taste again.
8. Season the corn polenta with salt and pepper and serve with the black sesame aubergine. Crumble over the cheese, sprinkle with the sliced spring onions and reserved sesame seeds.