My mouth is literally watering as I type this recipe up, I made this just before we started off on our Italy break a week and half ago and I’ve got a few spare hours just now so thought I’d best get it on here! We’ve been sampling some of the vegan delights here in Italy which has involved vegan pizza and ice cream. We don’t eat processed foods as a general rule, but when in Rome (hee hee did you see what I did there!!!). As I blog a lot about plant based foods I thought I should at least try out the vegan alternatives that are in the supermarkets so I know what people are talking about.
I have to say, I still really prefer fresh foods, I don’t quite fancy all the soy based mayo, cheese and seitan etc that we’ve sampled, it’s not that it tastes bad, it’s just it doesn’t taste as good as fresh veggie dishes do, especially when you can make your own food to your particular palate. Although I did really quite enjoy the vegan cornetto, that was fun.
But anyways, that’s why I have my tummy roaring at me when I’m sorting out this particular recipe as it was delicious and packed with all good things. Tonight we’re in a little apartment with a 2 ring hob thingy and a microwave/grill type gadget, so I’m keeping it simple with a bean chilli and some rice and of course being on our jollies with a view our over Rome, we have to have a cheeky glass of prosecco to go with it! Ciao.
Chilli Battered Aubergine Slices served with Spring Onion Mash topped with pico de gallo and slices of Avocado. (Vegan & Gluten Free)
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Serves 2 – Ready in 45 minutes
For the Aubergine Slices
- 3 medium sized aubergines (eggplants) sliced lengthways (I got 9 slices)
- 4 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 1 tbsp red chili flakes
Soak the aubergine in the marinade
For the batter
- 3 tbsp gram flour
- 5 tbsp water
For the coating
- ¾ cup breadcrumbs (make sure GF)
- 1 hot green chili finely slices
- 1 tbsp chili flakes
- Black pepper
Coat in the batter and dredge through the breadcrumb mixture – bake in the oven for 30 minutes turning half way through
Pico de gallo
- ½ green chilli finely chopped
- 1 red onion finely chopped
- 8 cherry tomatoes finely diced
- Juice of ½ lime
- Handful of fresh coriander
- 3 large white potatoes peeled and chopped into chunks
- 3 spring onions finely diced
- Lots of black pepper
- 1 tbsp margarine or soy cream
Avocado sliced on top
- Preheat oven to 180 degrees celcius (356 degrees fahrenheit) and prepare a large baking tray with parchment (or lightly oil the tray if you have no parchment paper).
- In a shallow bowl combine the balsamic vinegar and chilli flakes and then dredge through the slices of aubergine until they are well coated and leave to sit in the marinade for 10 minutes.
- In 2 bowls prepare your batter and coating, so mix together the gram flour and water in one bowl and then the breadcrumbs, chilli, chilli flakes and black pepper in another bowl. Take your slices of marinated aubergine and coat first in the batter and then coat in the breadcrumbs and place on the baking tray, do this with all the aubergine slices, then pop in the oven to bake for 30 minutes, turning half way through.
- While these are baking away, you can make the mashed potatoes. Just add the potato chunks to a pan of boiling water and cook for about 12 – 15 minutes until they start to soften, drain and add back to the pan and mash using a potato masher making sure you get rid of any big lumps of potato. Then just stir through the spring onion, black pepper (I like peppery mash so I use quite a bit) and then a little dollop of margarine or soy cream (I tried out some soy cream only because I had a little bit of it left) mix it all together until well combined and it’s ready.
- For the pico de gallo just mix all the ingredients together in a bowl and it’s ready to serve.
To plate up, I started with a bed of the spring onion mash, topped with 3 slices of aubergine (after I took the photo I piled on 2 more slices though!) finally I just spooned over lots of pico de gallo and topped with some slices of avocado and served. You can have chilli sauce or some tahini or hummus on the side too, whatever takes your fancy.