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Aubergine Skewers with Peanut Sauce & Quinoa a dish inspired by Indonesian Satay

This dish is inspired by satay, an Indonesian dish consisting of grilled skewered meat – often chicken, served on skewers with a rich peanut sauce. If satay is on the menu I will 100% order it, so I was inspired to come up with a vegetable focused version for home using the meaty texture of aubergines.

This is a dish I taught in my online classes during the pandemic, and is perfect for the late spring – summer months. I also recommend serving it without the quinoa as a starter dish as I have done on retreats recently.

There are a lot of elements to this dish, so before you start cooking, I recommend you weight out and chop all the ingredients as per the above list – this is referred to as your ‘mise en place’. The only exception is fresh mint which will blacken if chopped and left so do that just before serving.

 

Aubergine Skewers with Peanut Satay Sauce & Quinoa
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Aubergine Skewers with Peanut Satay Sauce & Quinoa
Author:
Recipe type: Main course
Serves: 2
Ingredients
Peanut sauce
  • 80g unsalted unroasted peanuts
  • 1 tbsp light olive or rapeseed oil
  • 1 banana shallot, finely chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, finely diced
  • ½ small red chilli, finely diced
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tsp soy sauce, or more to taste
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • Sea salt
Aubergine skewers
  • 6 skewers, wooden or metal
  • 1 large, or 2 small aubergines, cut into 4cm cubes
  • Olive or rapeseed oil
  • Sea salt and black pepper
Quinoa
  • 100g quinoa, rinsed well
  • 150mls vegetable stock
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • ½ small red chilli, finely diced
  • Handful mint, shredded
Garnish (optional)
  • Handful radishes, thinly sliced
  • 1 spring onion, thinly sliced
Instructions
  1. There are a lot of elements to this dish, so before you start cooking, I recommend you weight out and chop all the ingredients as per the above list - this is referred to as your 'mise en place'. The only exception is fresh mint which will blacken if chopped and left so do that just before serving.
  2. First make the satay sauce.Toast the nuts in a dry small-medium sized saucepan till lightly browned. Place in a food processor or blender and blitz until completely broken down into fine crumbs. Set aside.
  3. In the same saucepan warm a tablespoon of oil, and sauté the chopped shallot for 4-5 minutes until softened. Add the chilli and garlic and cook for a further minute or so. Next add 300mls of water, 1 tablespoon maple syrup, and a teaspoon soy sauce. Bring to the boil, then add the ground peanuts, stir well and simmer on low for 10 minutes or so until the sauce has reduced and thickened. Take off the heat and allow to cool off. Add the lime juice and season to taste, adding even more lime if you like.
  4. Get the quinoa on. Place the rinsed quinoa into a saucepan with 150mls cold stock. Bring to the boil, cover, turn the heat to very low and cook for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes take off the heat and leave covered for 5 minutes to absorb the last of the stock. Fluff up with a fork, stir through the sesame oil and put aside to cool.
  5. While the quinoa is cooking start your aubergines - toss the cubed aubergine with enough oil to lightly coat, and season with salt and pepper .Thread approximately 4-5 cubes on each skewer and place on a grill pan. Cook under the grill for approximately 20 minutes, until charred and cooked through. Check and turn regularly to avoid burning.
  6. When you're ready to plate up, stir the chopped chilli and shredded mint through the quinoa, then
  7. start with a mound of quinoa, in the centre of two plates. Top with the aubergine skewers - 3 per person looks good. Pour over the satay, and serve any extra in a small ramekin. Garnish with the raw radishes, spring onions and a little extra shredded mint.
Notes
If you are using wooden skewers, soak them in water for at least 30 minutes prior to cooking to avoid them catching fire under the grill.