Oriental miso baked aubergines


These are delicious served either hot or cold, with jasmine rice or on a bed of quinoa. Make sure that you that choose a mild miso paste — the darker the colour the more salty the paste.

Serves 4
Preparation time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 50 minutes

2 aubergines
2 tbsp groundnut oil
4 tsp sesame oil
2 tbsp mirin (Japanese rice wine)
1 tbsp sake
4 tbsp white miso paste
150ml water
1 tbsp caster sugar
1 tsp soy sauce

For the garnish:
Handful toasted sesame seeds
Small bunch coriander

Preheat the oven to 180°C.
Wash and pat dry the aubergine, then halve it lengthways.
With the tip of a knife, score the flesh deeply in a diamond criss-cross pattern by making five or six long cuts on the diagonal, cutting at a steep angle, and then rotating the aubergine to make another set of similar cuts. Make sure you do not do not cut through the skin.
Mix the groundnut and sesame oils and brush both sides of the aubergines with them.
Put the aubergines cut-side down on a baking tray lined with parchment paper.
Place in the preheated oven and bake for approximately 40 minutes, checking often to make sure that they do not burn.
If your aubergines are still not tender all the way through, give them a further 5-10 minutes.
Place the mirin and sake in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Simmer for 2 minutes to allow some of the alcohol to cook off.
Add the miso paste, water, sugar and soy sauce and stir until smooth.
Bring to the boil, and reduce to a thick sauce, stirring continuously with a whisk.
Spread miso sauce on the cut surface of the tender aubergines and return them to the oven for 10 minutes until the sauce bubbles.
Garnish with toasted sesame seeds and coriander.

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