Roasted Aubergine with a Garlic Sauce, Pine Nuts, Basil and Yoghurt

I have the Ottolenghi book Nopi, and have been determined to make something out of it if just to prove that a cookbook from a restaurant is not necessarily out of reach of someone who loves simple home cooking. While the recipes are a notch up from Ottolenghi’s other books, I enjoyed making this dish.

This really is a stunning dish. I mean, really very very good.

NOTE that this baked eggplant is so delicious, and could be used in a variety of ways. Bake the eggplant and top salads, use with pasta, remove the flesh and mix with yoghurt. Even in this recipe it won’t hold its shape once you begin to handle them, but don’t worry if they are a little mushier than expected. All the better to mop up with flatbreads.

If you would like other Eggplant recipes, try Cheese and Eggplant Torte, Marinated Eggplant, and Steamed Eggplant with Spring Onions and Sesame.

Ottolenghi recipes include Creamy Baked Sweet Potato, Creamy Caramelised Belgium Endive, and Sticky Balsamic Sweet Potatoes.

Or you might like to explore all Eggplant Recipes, and all of Ottolenghi recipes are here. Are you wanting Yoghurt recipes? Try here. Or simply browse all of our Late Summer recipes here.

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Chickpea and Carrot Salad with a Curry Dressing

If you soak and cook some chickpeas and keep them in the freezer, you always have chickpeas for recipes that take your fancy. Or when you cook some, cook twice as many and then use them over the following week in salads, pasta sauces, bakes and other dishes.

Chickpeas are great in salads, and this is a simple, easy salad with celery and carrot – two ingredients usually in your fridge. The dressing has a bit of spice with the use of curry powder. I usually keep some Malay Curry Powder in the cupboards, for use in Malaysian dishes. If you don’t have a generic curry powder, use garam masala.

Have a look at some other Chickpea recipes: Glorious Five Bean Salad, Chickpea Tabbouleh, or Chickpea Sundal. You can also make Baked Chickpeas as a snack.

Are you looking for some Carrot Salads? Have a look at Mung Bean and Baked Carrot Salad, Carrot and Blueberry Salad, and Carrot Sambol.

If you are after all Carrot recipes, look here, here for all Celery recipes, and here for all Chickpea recipes.

All of our various Salads are available here, or simply explore our Mid Summer dishes.

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Fragrant Persian Rosebud and Borage Flower Tea

Persian food is pretty extraordinary, and one of the more unusual ingredients that features in it is the Dried Persian Borage Flower. This is different to the European Borage flower which is quite tiny compared to the Persian one. Beginning life as a pink flower, it turns blue as it dries. It has such a relaxing quality, that making tea from it is a perfect evening task.

You can find Persian Borage Flowers online, at Persian shops or at Afghan shops. I found mine recently at a local Afghan shop. Also close by you will see the Persian dried Rosebuds. I like these better than the Chinese ones as the Chinese ones currently available have had a strange colour and no flavour or aroma. The Persian ones are so fragrant and don’t colour your tea the way the Asian ones do.

While you are there, pick up some dried limes as well – they will be near the spice section. Intensely lemony, they feature often in Persian food and we put some in this tea. Also near the dried ingredients you will find dried mint. You will need a pack of these two. Also pick up coriander seeds, saffron and cinnamon sticks if you don’t have any at home.

You might like to try our other teas made from herbs and spices. Try Cardamon, Cinnamon and Clove Tea, Mint and Lemon Verbena Tea, or Balinese Lemongrass and Ginger Tea.

You will find all our our Teas here, or just browse our Late Summer recipes.

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Japanese Simmered Sautéed Eggplant in Beautiful Broth

This dish has to be eaten to be believed! How can eggplant taste so not-like-eggplant?

Eggplant always surprises.

This is one of those dishes things that is an absolute surprise! The sort of recipe that makes you want to rush out to plant your own huge eggplant patch! This is more of a summer dish in Japan as eggplants are one of the best antidotes to Japan’s hot and sultry summers. But it can be cooked at any time that eggplants are in season. The broth is heavenly, and the eggplant acts like tofu, soaking up all of the flavours.

Browse our Eggplant recipes here and here. Or you might like to browse Japanese recipes here and here. You might also like our Kombu recipes. Check out our easy Summer recipes here and here.

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Grilled Radicchio or Witlof Salad with Shallots and Dill

Bitter greens, there is nothing better. My favourites are Radicchio, that ruby red leaf, and Witlof, also known as Belgium Endive. They are great raw but can also be cooked. Today we grill Radicchio for a table top salad, although Belgium Endive could be used too.

Keep in mind that radicchio loses colour as it cooks, so the salad does not necessarily keep that ruby red colour. Never mind, it is delicious. This is a simple salad, highlighting the wonderful flavours of the radicchio or witlof. Riadicchio especially gains a special sweetness when grilled, and here it is accentuated with the olive oil, golden shallots and dill.

This is another of our Bittman salad recipes. You can browse the others here.

Check to see if we have similar Radicchio recipes and Endive recipes. Or browse all of our Salads – we have such delicious ones they are worth exploring.

Or simply put your pens down and spend time checking out our Mid Summer dishes.

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Cucumber Salad with Capers and Ricotta

Cucumber Salads never fail to remind me of the British and their cucumber sandwiches. There is something elegant, simple, yet refined and luxurious about cucumbers. The taste is subtle and it is their water content that provides the perception of being cooling and wonderful.

Featuring them in salads is tough, given that subtlety. They can easily be overwhelmed by the ingredients that you pair them with. One of the ways to circumvent this is to use something creamy – feta, ricotta, avocado, for example, and then highlight the flavours with a contrasting tang from an ingredient or the dressing.

That is exactly what this salad does. It relies solely on the quality of the olive oil (must have an excellent taste), the cucumbers (not late seasons, make this in early or mid Summer) and the ricotta (to maximise the creaminess). I do hope that you enjoy it.

Are you looking for other Cucumber Salads? Try Cucumber and Avocado Salad, Translucent Cucumber Salad, and my Mother’s German Cucumber and Tomato Salad with Creamy Dressing.

All of our Cucumber Salads are here, and all of the Cucumber Recipes are worth browsing. Otherwise, perhaps browse our Mid Summer recipes.

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Zucchini Rice, Indian Style

Anyone who has ever grown zucchini will know that you can get a glut of zucchini very quickly. I planted 4 plants this year, forgetting how large the plants get, and they seem to be taking over the veggie garden. They have already swallowed 2 chilli bushes and a whole lot of radishes!

So I have the opportunity to explore zucchini recipes at this time of year, trying to keep that glut under control. This is an Indian mixed rice – cooked rice is mixed with spices and perhaps a vegetable or other ingredient. Indian mixed rice dishes are flavoursome and healthy!

Would you like to try other Mixed Rice dishes? Try Pepper Cumin Rice, Masala Lemon Rice, or Golden Rice.

Try these zucchini dishes: Zucchini Fry, Zucchini Thoran, and Marinated Zucchini.

You can browse all of our Mixed Rice dishes, all of our Rice dishes, our Zucchini dishes, or our Indian Recipes. Or simply explore our Late Summer dishes.

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Inji Thengai Thayir Pachadi | Ginger Coconut Yoghurt Salad or Chutney

Have I mentioned how important yoghurt is in our kitchen? We use it a lot – from lassi drinks, to salad dressings, to yoghurt curries, chilled soups, to pachadi dishes like this one, to all sorts of Middle Eastern dishes. We drain it to make it thick, we pile it on our overnight oats for breakfast and we drizzle it over fruit salads.

This dish, Ginger and Coconut Pachadi, can be used as an Indian Chutney (ie as a little on the side to eat with the main dishes) or more like an Indian Yoghurt Salad.

Try these recipes too: Spinach Pachadi, Carrot Pachadi, and Cucumber Pachadi.

If you would like some more ginger in your life, try this tea, Pickled Ginger, and a Ginger and Garlic Soup.

Take some time to browse all of our Pachadi dishes, all Yoghurt dishes or all Ginger dishes. Or explore our Late Summer dishes.

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Cucumbers and Avocado Salad with Japanese Style Dressing

A salad with a Japanese influenced dressing.

A soft and gentle, quick and easy salad where the crunch of fresh cucumber partners with the soft creaminess of the avocado.

Try some other cucumber recipes – Cucumber Yoghurt Salad (Raita), Tomato and Cucumber Cold Soup, or Mozzarella and Cucumber Salad with Caperberries and Lemon.

Perhaps you are looking for Avocado Salads? Have a look at Avocado and Celery Cold Soup, or Cucumber and Avocado Salad with Asian Style Dressing.

Browse our other Cucumber recipes here and here, and our Salad recipes here and here. We have a collection of Bittman Salads here. Or be inspired by our Mid Summer recipes here.

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Glazed 5-Spice Tofu Salad with Cucumbers and Radishes

Goodness, the beautiful salads keep on coming. Summer is made for salads – it is a season where little cooking is required. Thank goodness – all the more time to enjoy the long sunny days, the beautiful weather and of course, the beach.

We have eaten more Tofu on the past 6 months than in the past 6 years, I believe. We have the fabulous close-by S.E. Asian supermarket to blame with its endless variety of tofu, packaged and fresh. It is made into salads, dropped into broths, deep fried, and the flavoured ones eaten as-is quite often for a snack.

Today, we are using Five Spiced Tofu, although smoked tofu could be used if you can find it. Or smoke your own! In this salad, we glaze the tofu in a mixture of orange juice and honey – I have used Barley Malt too, so any sweet, syrupy, honey-like pantry item will be suitable.

Some similar recipes include: Black Pepper Tofu, Tofu and Chilli Salad and Tofu Stacks with Sesame and Spinach. And Tofu with a Peanut Sauce is pretty good too. All of our Tofu Salads are here. We also have other Tofu recipes – they are here.

Have a look at our Cucumber Salads, Radish Salads, and also our Bittman Salads. Or simply spend some leisurely time browsing our Mid Summer Dishes.

Feel free to browse our other Tofu recipes too. All of our Salads are here.

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Malaysian Lemak-Style Vegetables | Vegetables in a Coconut-Curry Broth

Enjoy the flavours of Malaysia with this easy vegetable dish.

Fresh, crunchy and health-giving, a bowl of stir-fried vegetables enriched with a deeply flavoured Coconut Curry broth is a wonderful lunch or light dinner – even an evening snack. A Food Bowl, straight from the source, without following any current food fashion.

You might like to also try : How to Make a Bowl Salad, or some tofu recipes – How to Use Deep Fried Tofu, Tofu Stacks with Spinach, or Marinated Tofu.

How about some other Vegetable Curries? Avial is stunning, or try a Mushroom Curry, or Olan (yum!).

Or explore some spicy soups – Tomato Rasam, Pepper Rasam or Indian Dal Soup.

Please browse other Malaysian recipes here and here, and S. E. Asian recipes here and here. All Tofu recipes are here. You might like to explore our easy Early Spring recipes.

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Falafel | Ta’amia | Spicy Middle Eastern Chickpea Patties or Balls

Using cooked or tinned chickpeas, falafels are very easy to make.

Who can resist a good falafel? Wonderful for snacks, meals, in wraps or topping salads, they are wonderfully tasty, textural and healthy. Whip them up using chickpeas you have previously cooked and  frozen, for an easy supper.

Home made falafel are a huge cut above store-bought ones, or even those from some restaurants that must purchase them in bulk and keep them frozen for a long time. One has to wonder why, they are so easy to make, whereas many pre-prepared ones taste like cardboard. Who hasn’t had a wrap or roll with cardboard-tasting falafel stuffed into them for a “vegetarian option” when it would have been more flavoursome to leave them out?

Worry no more, we have your back. These are fantastic. Crispy crunchy on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside. You can grind the chickpeas coarsely or more finely, which ever is your preference. But they must be ground enough to hold together as fritters.

You might like to also try hummus, which goes well with falafel. Chickpeas make a whole range of dishes. Try Chickpea Fingers, for example (it uses chickpea flour). Or Chickpea “Tabblouleh”Chickpeas can be baked, or made into a spread, or smashed and made into a salad.  They are really healthy – have a look at this article.

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Sakkarai Pongal | Sweet Pongal with Milk

Sakkarai Pongal is short grained, raw rice cooked in jaggery and milk with mung dal, simmered until thick and then garnished with ghee, cashew nuts and raisins. It is not the traditional Milk Pongal cooked completely in milk, but is a definite favourite. It is a distinctive dish from Tamil Nadu, and also cooked in Sri Lanka and some other states in South India.

Pongal is a festival in January where we thank the Sun for the bounty that it brings us. Sakkarai Pongal is cooked in the morning as the sun rises and is presented as part of the devotions. Read more about the Pongal Festival here. And all of our dishes for the Pongal Festival are here.

But Pongal, the dish, can be made at any time. There are sweet versions (sakkarai), and you might like to try the others: Sakkarai Pongal from Jaffna; and Sakkaria Pongal without Milk.

And there is a savoury version, called Ven Pongal. You can see that one here.

Otherwise, browse all of our Rice dishes, and all of our Indian dishes. You might like to take some time and browse all of our Mid Summer recipes.

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Bondi Bircher Muesli | Bondi Overnight Oats

Muesli is a breakfast and brunch dish of raw rolled oats and other ingredients including grains, fresh or dried fruits, seeds and nuts, and may be mixed with cow’s milk, soy milk, almond milk, other forms of plant milk, yogurt and/or fruit juice. (Thanks, Wikipedia.)

Bircher Muesli was developed around 1900 by Maximilian Bircher-Brenner, a Swiss doctor and nutritionist, for his patients at his Zurich sanatorium as a way of getting more raw fruit into their diets. It is still a very popular breakfast in Switzerland and Germany, as well as many other parts of the world. The original recipe called for a higher ratio of fresh fruit to grain, and soaked the raw oats overnight since they took some time to soften. Each day the patients began their day with this mushy fruity mixture. Perhaps it was not an inspirational dish at the time, but in the past 12 decades, the dish has been refined and is an attractive start to the day.

Bircher Muesli traditionally contains a lot of apples, by way of juice and grated fruit. Bircher-Benner believed apples cured him of jaundice in his youth, and he strongly advocated the healing powers of diets high in fruit and vegetables. Thus originally it had few oats (about 1 Tblspn per person) and lots of fruit.

I guess Bircher Muesli was the original Overnight Oats! Here in Australia it is a perfect Summer breakfast. Fruit is plentiful in Summer – beautiful, perfect peaches, apricots, peacharines, nectarines, berries, plums, …. all and more freely available. This breakfast dish – the Australian version – celebrates our sunshine and Summer.

You must also try Overnight Oats. Other dishes include Shrikand and Besan Payasam, both interesting dishes for breakfast.

Have a look at all of our Breakfast dishes here, or browse our easy Mid Summer recipes.

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Red Pepper and Tomato Salad with Crispy Flatbread, Chilli and Lime

A Salad with the tastes of Mexico

What to do with left over flatbread or roti, no longer near its prime, but not yet ready to be allocated to the bin? Ah, I have the answer for you. Crisp it up in the oven and turn it into a wonderful, mexican influenced salad.

Those organic corn chips can be used in this salad too – the ones without added flavourings. They are perfect. Also corn tortillas, crisped in the oven.

While you are at it, crisp up a lot of the flatbread, rotis or tortillas. They are excellent with cheese or dips. Very crispy and crunchy.

You will love this salad. Feel free to browse our other Salad recipes here and here. We have a lot, so if you just want Tomato Salad recipes they are here. This is a salad inspired by Bittman – have a look at his other superb salads.  Or simply explore our easy Summer recipes here and here.

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