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Aubergine (Eggplant) with Green Curry

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Aubergine (Eggplant) with Green Curry

Aubergine (Eggplant) with Green Curry
Courtesy of Alain Passard and Frances Lincoln Ltd. The Art of Cooking with Vegetables.
Provided by:
total prep
Recipe courtesy of The Art of Cooking with Vegetables by Alain Passard, 2012. Published by Frances Lincoln Ltd.

This is one of the loveliest specialities at L’Arpege. It must be something to do with the tender, savoury flesh of the roasted aubergine and the multiple flavours of the mysterious green curry.

Ingredients

  • 2 large aubergines (eggplants), each weighing about 200 g (7 oz)
  • About 16 tablespoons virgin olive oil
  • 1 large sweet white onion, such as a Cevennes or a Spanish onion
  • Leaves from a bunch of flat-leafed parsley, finely chopped
  • Leaves from a bunch of coriander parsley, finely chopped
  • 1 stick lemongrass, trimmed of dry outer layers, the stalk finely chopped
  • 1 clove of new garlic, peeled and finely chopped
  • A small amount of finely chopped green chilli to taste
  • 1/2 lime skin intact
  • A pinch or two of Madras curry powder, according to taste
  • Fleur de sel or the salt of your taste
  • DRINK WITH:
  • Red from the Languedoc region, such as a Corbieres or a Faugeres
  • TO SERVE AS A MAIN COURSE:
  • Double the portion size and offer an accompaniment of wild rice

Directions

  • Cut the aubergines in half lengthways, score their flesh with a small knife, then drizzle over half the quantity of olive oil. Put the aubergines on a baking sheet and bake them in a preheated 200°C (400°F, Gas Mark 6) oven for 30-40 minutes, turning half way through cooking.
  • Meanwhile, make the green curry: in a saute pan, sweat the onion in the remaining olive oil over very gentle heat. When, after about 10 minutes, it starts to soften and become translucent, stir in the parsley, coriander, lemongrass, garlic, chilli, lime and Madras curry to taste. Continue to sweat the ingredients for a further 10 minutes or until the onion is completely soft.
  • Drain the mixture through a sieve, holding on to the liquid. Discard the segment of lime. Blend the solids briefly, adding just enough of the liquid-or some olive oil if you prefer-to make a light, homogeneous puree which holds its form. Adjust the seasoning, then use a pair of spoons to shape this puree into 4 egg-shaped quenelles.
  • Present the baked aubergines, seasoned with salt, on a warm serving dish. Arrange the quenelles alongside. Serve as a first course or as an accompaniment to roast chicken or spit roasted lamb. The curry mixture keeps extremely well in a sealed container in the refrigerator and makes a good flavouring for cauliflower, eggs and fish.