I love a good brunch, right? Lazy mornings, catching up with friends, relaxed, easy, informal and chatty – untroubled, comfortable being. It’s a long meal that takes up a large chunk of the middle of the day. So very delightful with a touch of indulgence.
This is a lovely brunch dish. The sort that you can centre your brunch spread around. Everything else should come out of the fridge, cupboard or bakery: bread and real butter, home made jams, fresh coffee and full cream milk, fruit juice from the fruit in the trees in the garden, sliced fresh fruit or perhaps baked fruit, a few cheeses (including a blue with bite), overnight oats or bircher muesli, yoghurt and some buttery pastries. This, plus the weekend papers and some good gossip, is all you need to spend half a day in unadulterated bliss.
Of course, it also makes a great supper dish – I might make it on a cold Spring evening. Who doesn’t want something deep fried on a cold night?
There’s a fair bit of preparation involved in this but it is a stunning, unusual dish that you can easily get hooked on. There is also quite a bit of washing up!
This is an Ottolenghi dish of course – it takes a while to make and has 8 or 9 processes. He floats eggs on top of the fried vegetables – I use burrata, bocconcini or buffalo mozzarella. Actually the dish is somewhat similar to Mixed Vegetables with Green Chilli Oil, another dish from Ottolenghi.
This is a recipe from Plenty More – we are cooking our way through this book. We feel free to substitute ingredients that we don’t eat (e.g. eggs), and ones that are not readily available in our local area.
If you are keen to reduce the frying in this dish, bake the eggplant until cooked. There won’t be any loss of flavour. You could also bake the slices of potato.
I couldn’t make this dish look nice, but boy, the combination of potato, tahini sauce, eggplant and tomato is so. very. good.
Browse all of our Brunch and Breakfast dishes, and all of our Ottolenghi dishes. Our Ottolenghi dishes from Plenty More are here. We have written about our experiences cooking through this book. Or explore our Mid Spring recipes.
Eggplant, Potato and Tomato
4 medium tomatoes, peeled and cut into 1cm dice
0.5 small red onion, peeled and finely chopped
1 Tblspn white-wine vinegar
15g parsley, chopped
1.5 Tblspn Sriracha or other hot savoury chilli sauce or chilli paste (use less chilli paste)
sea salt and black pepper
2 eggplant, cut into 3cm chunks
250ml olive oil
about 300ml sunflower oil
600g waxy potatoes, peeled and cut into 3mm-thick slices
80g tahini paste
2.5 Tblspn lemon juice
1 small garlic clove, peeled and crushed
3 small burrata balls or use buffalo mozzarella or bocconcini
1 tspn sumac
1 Tblspn coriander leaves, chopped
Put the peeled, diced tomatoes in a colander for half an hour to drain. Transfer to a medium bowl and add the chopped onion, vinegar, parsley, Sriracha and a quarter-teaspoon of salt. Mix gently and set aside.
Mix the aubergine with about 1.5 tspn sea salt, place in a colander and set over a bowl for half an hour to drain off any excess liquid. Transfer to a plate lined with kitchen paper and pat dry.
In a 26cm sauté pan or skillet, put 200ml of olive oil and as much sunflower oil as you need to bring it 1cm up the sides of the pan. Place on a medium-high heat and, once hot, add the aubergine in batches and fry for 3-4 minutes, until golden brown. Remove with a slotted spoon, transfer to a plate lined with kitchen paper and repeat with the rest of the aubergine. Leave the oil to cool, pour into a jar – you’ll be able to use it for future frying – and wipe down the pan.
Bring a medium pan of water to a boil, add the potatoes and cook for three minutes. Drain, refresh under cold water and set aside to dry. Add 2 Tblspn olive oil to the skillet and place on a medium-high heat. Add the potatoes and fry for 10 minutes with sea salt and a crack of black pepper, until cooked through and golden brown; turn them over from time to time. Remove the pan from the heat and set aside.
Put the tahini, 60ml of water, 1.5 Tblspn lemon juice, the garlic and a pinch of sea salt in a medium bowl, and whisk to a thick, pourable consistency. Spoon half the sauce over the potatoes and spread the aubergine on top. Follow this with the remaining tahini, then the tomatoes.
Lay the burrata, bocconcini or mozzarella balls (halved or cut as appropriate) on top of the tomatoes, along with a drizzle of the remaining oil, a sprinkle each of sumac and coriander leaves, and the last of the lemon juice. Bring to the table.