Eggplant and Pomegranate Salad with Toasted Pine Nuts
Meaty eggplant (aubergine) and sweet-and-sour pomegranate make a delicious pair here, with toasted pine nuts offering a finishing crunch.
Preheat the oven to 200ºC/400ºF/gas mark 6.
Put the coriander and cumin seeds into a mortar and crush them with a pestle. Toast them in a dry skillet or frying pan for a few minutes, or until fragrant.
Put the eggplants (aubergines) into a large bowl and toss with the olive oil, crushed garlic, salt, and pepper. Sprinkle on the toasted coriander and cumin seeds.
Drizzle 1 tablespoon oil onto a baking sheet. Dip the eggplants lightly in the flour. Place them on the baking sheet and roast for 30 minutes, or until chargrilled and slightly crisp. Let cool.
While the eggplants are roasting, mix all the dressing ingredients together and set aside.
Put the roasted eggplants into a bowl, pour 1–2 tablespoons of the dressing, and toss well. Let stand for 10 minutes so the dressing can absorb.
Heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil in a skillet or frying pan and lightly toast the pine nuts until golden.
Add the chopped parsley, spinach, and pomegranate seeds to the eggplants and toss together well. Sprinkle on the toasted pine nuts and serve with the remaining dressing.
Recipe courtesy of Phaidon
Taken from The Middle Eastern Vegetarian Cookbook by Salma Hage, published by Phaidon, priced £24.95 in hardback
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