Warm Aubergine, Tomato and Burrata samad

I know chefs are always banging on about how much the quality of the ingredients matters, but it’s absolutely true that if you source the best produce, more than half the work is already done before you even get into the kitchen. That truth is never more apparent than when it comes to an uncomplicated salad like this one… there is nowhere to hide. Make sure you use sweet, ripe tomatoes and firm aubergines in season, then splash out on really good-quality, creamy burrata and you can’t go wrong.

Ingredients

Serves 4

3 aubergines, trimmed and sliced 1cm thick

4 tbsp olive oil

850g heritage tomatoes, sliced 1cm thick

80g rocket leaves

3 burratas

Sea salt

For the dressing

60ml olive oil

1 banana shallot, peeled and finely diced

2 garlic cloves, peeled and finely diced

3 rosemary sprigs, leaves picked and finely chopped

40ml red wine vinegar

½ tsp chilli flakes (optional)

Freshly ground black pepper


Preparation

1Place a griddle pan over a high heat.

2Brush each aubergine slice with a little of the olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Lay a few of the slices, oil side down, on the griddle, brush the tops with a little more oil and sprinkle with a little more salt. Cook for 2–3 minutes on each side, or until charred and soft. Repeat with the remaining slices.

3Pour the oil for the dressing into a small saucepan and place over a medium heat for 2–3 minutes. It is hot enough when a piece of shallot added to the pan sizzles gently. Turn the heat off, then add all the shallot, the garlic and rosemary and mix well. Leave to cook gently for 2–3 minutes, then add the vinegar and chilli flakes (if using) and season with salt and pepper.

4Layer the aubergine slices and tomatoes in a shallow bowl or on a platter. Drizzle each layer with a little of the dressing, then sprinkle with the rocket. Cut each burrata in half and place on top. Drizzle with the remaining dressing and serve.

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