Smoky aubergine, chilli and feta pizzas

A mouthwatering, Israeli take on the Italian classic

  • place PRE
  • place COOK
  • place SERVES 5
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  • For the dough: In the bowl of a stand mixer (with kneading hook attached) add the water, olive oil and yeast and combine. Add the flour and salt and mix on a low speed until just combined. Increase the speed slightly and mix for around 8 minutes, until you have a shiny smooth looking dough.
  • Place in a lightly floured bowl. Cover and prove for 1 ½ hours (on the counter top) until doubled in size.
  • Divide the dough into 5 portions of 200g, rolling them into balls either between the palms of your hands, or lightly rolling on a worktop. Set aside on a floured surface, or in the fridge and let them rest while you prepare the topping.
  • For the topping: grill 2 large aubergines (poke with a knife first), either in the oven, or over coals, until the flesh is soft. Remove the skins and put the flesh in a sieve allowing the excess water to drain off.
  • Mix the chili, garlic and olive oil in a bowl with a fork.
  • Heat the oven to 250°C and roll first dough ball to about the size of a dinner plate - around 5mm thick.
  • To assemble: tear just less than half a ball of mozzarella over the base, followed by the aubergine (spread it evenly), a pinch of thyme leaves, and a yolk gently placed in the centre of the pizza. Repeat for the other bases.
  • Bake until evenly cooked (and a little crisp) remove from the oven and crumble over the feta cheese followed by the chili and olive oil dressing.

Omer and Daniel are head chefs at The Alena restaurant at The Nornan Hotel in Tel Aviv

First published in the JC July 29 2021


For the dough (5 pizza bases)

360ml water, room temperature



45ml olive oil



5g (½ tbsp) dried yeast



580g strong white flour

12g (2 tsp) kosher salt





For the pizza toppings



2 aubergines



150g feta



2 large mozzarella balls



5 green chilies, de-seeded and diced



1 clove garlic, minced



100ml olive oil



3 sprigs fresh thyme (leaves picked)



5 egg yolks (1 per pizza)






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