The ratio of eggplant and bell pepper, and the consistency of the mash varies in recipes from different regions. Some recipes add more red bell peppers and make smoother mash. Since I’m a big fan of eggplants, my recipe has more of that and less bell pepper. It makes a creamier and less sweet version of ajvar. Also, I like to keep it a bit chunky unlike the puréed stuff available in jars. But you can lightly whiz it in a food processor if you want a sauce like texture.
Traditionally, the vegetables are charred on grills but placing them directly over stove top gas burner works just fine. Some recipes recommend removing the charred skins under running water, it definitely makes it easier to remove the skins but you’ll loose a lot of the charred flavour with it too and get some unwanted liquid in dish.
This warm salad makes a perfect addition to mezze menu or a delicious starter served with some fresh bread, yogurt and pickles.
1 red bell pepper
4 red chilli peppers, chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon sugar
1 tablespoon vinegar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
a small bunch parsley, chopped
salt to taste
This Is What You Do:
Remove the stalks and chop the pulp of pepper and eggplant roughly. Set aside.
Heat oil in a pan on medium heat, add sugar, onion and garlic. Sauté for a 2-3 minutes or till the onion is light golden. Add chopped pepper and eggplant, add lemon juice and vinegar.
Season with salt and stir in red chilli peppers and parsley. Mix everything well. Serve warm in mezze menu or with pita bread.