Food and Wine Pairing of the week – Thai Eggplant Salad

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We just love eggplant! The iron, calcium and other minerals in eggplant supply the essential nutrients required by the body.  All this, while relishing a highly  flavorful veggie. Eggplants contain certain essential phyto nutrients which improve blood  circulation and nourish the brain. But remember—these nutrients are concentrated  in the skin of the eggplant, so don’t peel and throw it away.

Eggplant provides the body with fibre, it is low in calories and really helps satiate one’s appetite. Brilliant for cardiovascular health, baked eggplant will help lower the ‘bad’ cholesterol.  High in bioflavanoids your blood pressure and stress relief is now available on a plate.  Eggplant will also help prevent blood clots as it is full of Vitamin K as well as bioflavanoids and all are used to strengthen your capillaries.

In this weeks’ recipe we love that the tomatoes and eggplant are such a natural fit, how the basil is a definite must and we love how quick and uncomplicated it is. Oh, and it’s a warm salad! Perfect for Autumn!

 

Ingredients

  • 2 tblsp vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp chilli flakes
  • 2 medium sized eggplants, diced
  • 1 medium-sized onion, diced
  • 2 tomatoes diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 tblsp white wine
  • 1 tbslp red wine vinegar
  • 3 tblsp dark soy sauce
  • 2 tblsp brown sugar
  • 20 leaves fresh basil, shredded or torn
  • A pinch of salt
  • Handful pine nuts

Method

Make the dressing with the ½ chopped garlic, white wine, red wine vinegar, two tbslp soya sauce, 4 basil leaves, 1 tblsp of brown sugar and salt. Toss the tomatoes in it. Keep aside

Meanwhile heat a deep saucepan and add oil to it. Add red chilli flakes Let it sizzle for 10 seconds. Add the eggplant and stir fry for 3 minutes. Add onions and garlic and stir fry for three more minutes.

Once the eggplant has softened, add the remaining soya sauce and brown sugar and toss well. Remove for heat. Let it cool for a couple of seconds and add to the tomato and dressing mixture.

Toss well. Check for salt. Add the basil leaves and finally top with pine nuts

You could also add your favourite meat to bulk this salad up, dice and serve on top, or grill and serve on the side with some brown rice.

Serves 4

Wine Pairing – Bald Hills Pigeon Rocks Central Otago Pinot Gris 2010

This delightful wine is a perfect match for the Thai salad. Use 2 tablespoons of it in the dressing then drink the rest! The wine is flavoursome without being over-powering. The finish is long with a barely discernible sweet edge. Amazing value for such a wonderful wine.  Be sure to accompany your dish with this bottle.