Aubergine with Sweet Miso Sauce

In my house we eat a lot of miso. It’s a great ingredient to have in your cupboard for adding a flavour kick to almost anything, not just Japanese dishes. Miso is a fermented paste made from some sort of grain or pulse. There are many types and the taste ranges from salty/sweet to intense salty umami, almost beef flavour. There’s lots of ways to use it, in sauces, to marinade, to add depth to a stock or soup, in desserts to temper sweetness and even in butter (incredible on fried mushrooms!) and on aubergine.

This recipe is from a book called Hashi by Reiko Hashimoto. Its very simple and quick and makes a great meal with some seasoned or stir fried rice. The sauce can be used on lot of veg other than aubergine so you could make a big batch and keep it in the fridge. You could even turn it into a salad dressing by adding oil.

We have Clearspring Brown Rice Miso available in our shops and online veg box shop. Its perfect for this recipe.

Ingredients: (serves 2)

1 large aubergine

4 tbsp oil (I used pressed seasame oil but any thing which doesnt have a strong flavour is good)

2 tbsp brown rice miso

2 tsp sugar

1.5 tbsp mirin (or rice wine vinegar)

sesame seeds for garnish

Preparation: (About 20 minutes)

Preheat the grill to medium heat

Cut the aubergine into rounds about 2cm thick. Place them onto a baking tray and brush liberally with oil

Grill for 5-7 minutes then flip them over brush with more oil and grill again for another 5-7 minutes until they’re soft when you push the side.

Meanwhile to make the miso sauce put the miso, sugar and mirin into a small saucepan and heat until all the ingredients melt together (or buzz them in a microwave for a minute). There’s no need to cook them you just want the sugar to dissolve

Once the aubergine pieces are soft spread a little of the miso sauce onto each one. The thickness of the sauce is important, its pretty powerful so not too much. Should be about half a teaspoon for each piece. Make sure it covers all the aubergine

Put them back under the grill for 2 minutes until the miso just starts to bubble.

Garnish with toasted sesame seeds and serve straight away.

These are wonderful with seasoned Japanese rice and pickles. We also had some Peelham Farm steak marinated in tamari with wasabi and pickled ginger.