Yotam Ottolenghi, the Israeli Chef is all the rage in the U.K. and revered in culinary circles the world over. His partner in love as in life, Sami Tamini is a Palestinian and the two of them own several well known eating establishments in the U.K. which serve a fantastic array of meals respecting both culinary traditions.
You have to admit, a love story across borders does make the heart go pitter patter, even just a little.
In this recipe you'll find Sami Tamimi's technique for getting the seeds out of the pomegranate, which is now a very well-known secret as illustated with great form by the gentleman who is very much not Sami.
BTW, If you are ever in London (and this is on my to do list as well) is to go to their bakery and order the orange polenta cake which I have heard from reliable foodies in one word - exceptional!
And since orange and polenta in a cake is one of my all time favorites, you bet!
Just so you know, I am currently fighting an uphill battle against the onslaught of holiday treats and parties and subsequent effects to my thickening waistline among other things.
Needless to say, I feel a great sense of self-reproach.
And it is in such a moment, that I turn to Yotam Ottolenghi's Eggplant with Buttermilk sauce & Pomegranate.
I mean, what's not to love? All that flavor for what I hope will make up for the three chocolate truffles I had no business eating but ate nevertheless.
Eggplant halves are liberally slathered with olive oil and roasted with thyme. And served with rich 'toum'-like yogurt and garlic sauce and bejewelled with pomegranate rubies.
Like I said, what's not to love? Not to mention, the colors are just perfect for the season!
Pre-heat oven to 425 deg F
Line a 11" x 17" jelly roll pan or baking tray with parchment paper.
Place the eggplant cut side up on the sheet. Using a pastry brush, liberally brush olive all over the cut side face of the eggplant. Repeat 3 time so all the olive oil is absorbed by the eggplant.
Sprinkle with salt, pepper and thyme leaves.
Roast in the hot oven for 35-40 minutes until the eggplants are soft and tender and the bottoms are brown.Meanwhile, To make the sauce, whisk together all of the ingredients. Taste for seasoning, then keep cold until needed.