Grilled aubergines with mozzarella and yuzukosho

Grilled aubergines with mozzarella and yuzukosho

By
From
Citrus
Serves
4
Photographer
Mowie Kay

I’m venturing into the murky realms of fusion here. This is a combination I tried on a fridge forage and I loved it – the aubergines are smoky and squidgy, the mozzarella is creamy and the dressing has just the right amount of hot, sweet, saltiness to offset any richness. Also, if you use, for example, the lemon-mandarin combination for kosho as described, you are still – just – in the world of Mediterranean flavours. Don’t use the best mozzarella here as it will ooze; a cheap one actually works better.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
3 fat, round aubergines, cut into 2cm rounds
olive oil, for brushing
250g mozzarella, thickly sliced and drained in a colander
a little yuzu powder, for sprinkling, (optional)
sea salt
freshly ground black pepper

For the dressing

Quantity Ingredient
1 tablespoon yuzukosho, or other type of kosho
1 tablespoon yuzu juice or lemon juice
1 mandarin, Finely grated zest and juice
a dash light soy sauce

For the greens and lentils

Quantity Ingredient
1 tablespoon oil
2 spring onions, sliced diagonally
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
200g chard, stems and leaves separated, both sliced
100g sprouting broccoli, cut into sections
100g oriental greens, sliced lengthways
50g mizuna or any other mustardy greens
a handful shiso leaves, (optional)
100g cooked green lentils, (preferably al dente)
a dash light soy sauce or tamari, (optional)

Method

  1. First, grill or bake the aubergine slices. If you have the time to grill them on a griddle, do so, as you get the best smoky flavour that way, otherwise you can put them under a medium grill or even bake in the oven at 200°C. Whichever way you do it, brush first with olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Cook until they are browned, with char lines if on a griddle, and beautifully tender within.
  2. While the aubergines are grilling, whisk the dressing ingredients together and taste. Adjust by adding more of any of the ingredients until you get the flavour you like.
  3. To finish the aubergines, put them all on a baking tray and lay the mozzarella on top. Put under a hot grill for as short a time as possible, so the mozzarella browns lightly but is still soft and not too rubbery.
  4. Meanwhile, for the greens, put the oil in a wok and heat until shimmering. Add the spring onions, garlic, chard stems and sprouting broccoli and stir fry for 2–3 minutes, until the broccoli is almost cooked. Add the chard leaves and oriental greens with a splash of water (or stock) and cook for a further minute. Add the mizuna and shiso leaves, if using, and wilt in, then stir through the lentils just to warm them. Season with salt and pepper, and a dash of soy sauce or tamari if you like.
  5. Sprinkle the mozzarella-topped aubergines with yuzu powder if you have some, and serve with the dressing, alongside the greens and lentils in a separate bowl.
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