Roasted eggplant, tomato and chilli dip


I try to start the week with a few healthy, vegetarian meals to make me feel less bad about snacking all weekend.  I love this spicy roasted eggplant dip, delicious guilt-free eating.

1 medium sized eggplant

2 tablespoons of oil (plus a little olive oil to roast the eggplant)

1 red onion, finely chopped

2 tomatoes, finely chopped

1 green chilli, sliced vertically down the middle

3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped

1/2 teaspoon of mustard seeds

1 heaped teaspoon of bottle masala

1 teaspoon of salt

1 teaspoon of sugar

1 teaspoon of tamarind paste

1 teaspoon of tomato paste

fresh coriander

Pre-heat oven to 200 degrees C.  Cut the top off the eggplant and slice it in half vertically.  Sprinkle salt on the open faces, rub the eggplant with a little olive oil, place face down on baking paper and roast for around 20-25 minutes.  Remove it once it is looking well browned and a bit charred, and when it has cooled slightly scoop all the flesh out and set aside.  The skin should come off easily and the flesh should be mushy.

Heat oil in frying pan and fry red onion for a few minutes until it starts to brown.  Add green chilli, garlic and tomatoes, fry for a few more minutes until everything is soft. Add bottle masala, salt and sugar and then add the mashed eggplant.  Stir, cover and cook for a few minutes until everything is combined and looking mushy.  Add tamarind and tomato paste and taste for salt and the right balance of flavours - spicy, sour and sweet.  Finely chop and add a handful of fresh coriander at the end. 

Serve with any flatbread or spread on toast, or eat with white rice (you can add a bit of water if you want to achieve a thinner consistency).