On my Tray of Bliss today is some 'me time' in the kitchen.
Cooking is indeed one of my great life passions and a day in the kitchen without interruption is a true indulgence.
I've been growing finger eggplants (aubergines) and I'm eating them for breakfast, lunch and dinner at the moment as there's so many of them and no-one else eats them...well not as a vege anyway.
So I'm on a quest to find ways to make them more attractive to the non-believers in the family!
Here's my Eggplant (Aubergine) Relish that I made yesterday...
...it smells and tastes so earthy and 'home made-ish' that it's hard not to eat it straight from the jar.
I served it last night with our melt-in-the-mouth Corned Beef, some steamed baby potatoes and a rainbow salad, and the sighs and mmm-mmm's were enough to tell me I'd struck a winner!
Here's the recipe. This makes just one jar, unlike many relish recipes that make enough for 10. Feel free to multiply it to increase the yield. It will respond well.
Eggplant (Aubergine) Relish
3 finger eggplants or 1 large, chopped roughly
½ red capsicum (pepper), diced
2 small tomatoes, diced
1 small onion, diced
2 tablespoons olive oil
½ teaspoon each garlic (one clove), powdered ginger, allspice, paprika and salt
¾ cup sugar
1 ¼ cups vinegar – Apple Cider vinegar gives a good result but it really doesn’t matter too much
1 dessertspoon cornflour
2 tablespoons water
1 recycled sterilised jar with lid, about 400mls capacity (around 1 1/3 cup). You need the kind that has a little pop-up button in the middle.
Sterilise your jar by scrubbing it well with hot soapy water, rinsing in hot water, then drying in a low oven. Do not use a dishtowel or teatowel to dry the inside or you will reintroduce bacteria into your jar and it will not be sterilised.
In a non-stick pan, heat the olive oil over a medium high heat.
Add the diced onion to and stir fry until translucent but not brown.
Add the eggplant, capsicum and tomatoes, and continue to stir fry until softened, about 3 minutes.
Add the spices and stir well.
Add the sugar and stir.
Add the vinegar and bring to the boil, stirring well.
Reduce the heat to low, and simmer until the liquid is reduced by about half and the mixture looks thicker. This takes around 20-30 minutes. Give it a stir occasionally to stop it sticking to the bottom of the pan.
Remove your dry jar from the oven, using oven mitts as the jar will be quite hot.
Mix the cornflour and water to a smooth paste in a small cup and add to the mixture in the pan, stirring constantly until it thickens…about 20 seconds.
Spoon the relish carefully into the jar, and seal firmly.
Turn the jar upside down for 2 minutes to activate the airtight seal, then right way up. The little button should invert automatically or within a minute or so, giving you a vacuum seal.
Lasts up to three months in a cool pantry or up to six months in the refrigerator. Once opened, use within a month.
Absolutely delicious with cold cuts, roasts, as an antipasto accompaniment, with cheese and crackers or mixed with natural yoghurt, cream or cream cheese as a dip.
What's on your Tray of Bliss today?