Friday, December 23, 2011

Cheesy Eggplant Nuggets

Cheesy Eggplant Nuggets
Glorious eggplant. Some say its flavourless but I'm a firm believer in one man's trash is another's treasure. Although it may be bland its unique texture makes it a wonderful vessel to combine with other flavours. In this case I'm talking about vintage cheese sandwiched between eggplant slices, dipped in a light herb and garlic batter then quickly fried for a crispy outer coating.

This recipe is a little bit fiddly - especially in the construction - but definitely worth the trouble after gorging on the end result.

Preparation Time: 45 minutes
Cooking Time:      20 minutes
Ingredients:         2 medium sized eggplants
                         100 grams of sliced cheese
                         1 cup of plain flour
                         1/2 tsp of dry yeast
                         Salt and pepper
                         1 tsp of mustard powder
                         Finely chopped chives
                         1 tsp of garlic powder
                         1 cup of lukewarm water
To make batter add flour, mustard powder, salt, pepper and garlic powder together. Make a well in this mixture to place the yeast. Pour in lukewarm water. Add chives and stir well. Leave to rest for half an hour in a warm place. Slice the eggplants into 1/2 rings. 

Salting the eggplant to extract bitterness.
Salt the eggplants and leave them for 10 minutes before wiping away excess salt and liquids. Fry in hot pan until golden brown yet still firm. Preheat oil for deep frying to 170 degrees centigrade. Sandwich thinly sliced cheese between the fried eggplant rings. Use toothpicks to secure the halves and dip into batter. Movingly quickly to ensure an even coating is achieved. Fry until golden and crispy.

Serve with guacamole, hummus, tzatziki or sweet chili sauce.

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