This month we are focusing on our Pesto Princess Harissa Paste – it’s one of those ingredients that has the power to add so many extraordinary (and easy) meals to your cooking repertoire so we are going to smear it on everything and make sure you are getting the most out of it.
This harissa aubergine and quinoa salad has been created for you – may it spark a royal adventure!
Until we meet again, take good care of yourselves,
You will need
2-3 large aubergines
1 cup quinoa
2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
2 tbsp olive oil
Small handful of fresh mint, rinsed and chopped
2 tbsp Pesto Princess Harissa Paste + 2 tbsp olive oil for basting
80g washed baby leaves
50g pomegranate seeds
Extra virgin olive oil
Extra lemon wedges
1. Rinse and dry off the aubergines before slicing them into 1 cm rounds. Layer the slices in a colander over a bowl or plate and sprinkle with loads of salt and let them rest for about 15-20 minutes to draw out any moisture and bitterness.
2. In the meantime, prepare the quinoa by placing it in a medium saucepan with a big pinch of salt and 2 cups of water and bring it to a rapid boil, then turn down the heat and let it cook for approximately 15 minutes (until all liquid is absorbed).
3. Place the quinoa in a serving dish and mix through 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice, 2 tbsp olive oil and fresh, chopped mint. Set aside until ready to serve.
4. Rinse the aubergine and pat dry before seasoning with pepper and drizzling liberally with olive oil. Preheat a cast iron griddle pan to medium high and place the aubergine slices into the pan, grill for about 4 minutes on each side, until you see grill marks (you can also make these on the braai!). Once both sides have grill marks, spoon some Pesto Princess Harissa Paste on one side, flip over and grill the harissa paste. Repeat on the other side. The aubergine should be nice and tender and give way when pushed with a fork.
5. Drizzle the grilled aubergine with olive oil, loads of fresh lemon juice and top with pomegranate jewels. You can either serve this as three separate elements for guests to assemble on their own or combine on one large serving platter to make an impressive meal. Layer the quinoa in a large platter, followed by the leaves and topped with the grilled aubergine. Best served warm or at room temperature.
Recipe and food styling by Michelle Parkin.