This is always one of my favourite times of the month - Secret Recipe Club reveal day. That day when I, along with all my fellow participants, get to reveal our assigned blog (that person we have been "cyber stalking" for the last month) and the dish we have made from their blog.
But I do have a confession to make. You see, I have committed the worst possible SRC crime - yes, I was supposed to post this a couple of weeks ago, but made a total mix up of dates and left my assigned blog hanging - Amy, how will you ever forgive me? Thankfully our host, Sarah, has allowed me to atone for my sins by putting up my post this week with a different group.
Anyways, enough about that. My assigned blog this month was Fearless Homemaker, hosted as you are now aware by Amy. Raised in Boston, and now living in Nashville, Amy is a self-described food and cocktail lover, enthusiastic entertainer, and crafty DIYer. Amy has a masters degree in Positive Psychology, and works as a co-ordinator for Cultural Care Au Pair. She is passionate about cultural exchange, and working with the American host families and their international au pairs to ensure a positive experience for everyone.
Amy had so many recipes I wanted to try (every one of them beautifully photographed), and a number of them have now been pinned for me to make at a later date, like this Slow-Cooker Chicken & Mushroom Farro Risotto, Spaghetti with Oven Roasted Tomatoes & Caramelised Fennel, and this Glazed Lemon Pound Cake. Actually it was the lemon pound cake that I was intent on making, but with an aubergine hanging around in the veggie bin which was in dire need of being used up, it was Amy's Roasted Eggplant, Red Pepper & Garlic Spread that won the day.
This was quick and easy to prepare, particularly using some ready roasted red peppers as I did - I roast loads of them during the season, and then bottle them in olive oil. Just perfect for adding to salads, antipasto platters, casseroles, and pasta sauces throughout the rest of the year. I skipped the onion, since we're not much fussed on it around here, and I added in a little bit of chilli paste for an extra kick, and a bit of paprika for it's lovely smokiness which I think is perfect with eggplant.
This dip is wonderful used, as Amy did, as a spread on fresh bread. It would also be great served as a dip for other vegetables. We used it as a rich, flavourful sauce for pasta, and would also be wonderful used as a pizza sauce - a great alternative for those who are sensitive to tomatoes. This was so good, I made a second batch, which I've now stashed in the freezer ready for a quick mid-week meal.
Roasted Aubergine, Red Pepper & Garlic Dip
Adapted from this recipe at Fearless Homemaker
Click here for the free recipe card
1x medium sized aubergine, cut into 2.5cm (1 inch) cubes
flaky sea salt & freshly ground black pepper
3x roasted red peppers, preserved in olive oil, drained and roughly chopped
(or 2x fresh red peppers, deseeded and cut into 2.5cm (1 inch) chunks)
2x cloves garlic, unpeeled and left whole
2 teaspoons chilli paste
1 teaspoon smoky paprika
1 tablespoon tomato paste (leave this out if you are sensitive to tomatoes)
Preheat oven to 220 degrees C (425 degrees F).
Toss eggplant cubes and garlic cloves with a generous slosh of olive oil, and a good seasoning of flaky sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. (If you're using fresh red peppers, toss them in as well.)
Line a shallow roasting tray with baking parchment and spread vegetables in a single layer over the tray. Place tray in the oven and roast until tender and golden - about 20 to 30 minutes. (Keep an eye on the garlic - it can burn quickly, so you may want to remove it half way through.) Remove from the oven and allow to cool to room temperature.
Squeeze garlic cloves out of their skins, and add them to a food processor, along with the eggplant and peppers. Blitz to a coarse paste. Add the chilli paste, paprika, tomato paste, and a generous slosh of olive oil (I used the reserved oil from the roasted peppers). Process until you reach a spreadable consistency. Taste and season with extra sea salt and pepper if desired.
Hope you enjoy this dish as much as I did, and visit the links below to check out all the other great dishes my Secret Recipe Club friends made.
Also shared at Hearth and Soul, hosted by the lovely April J. Harris.