Bhaingan Bhorta (Aubergine Chutney)

  I can often have a glut of things in the fridge or food cupboard. At the moment, it’s spinach, which I accidentally bought an extra bag of (ideas for a recipe, anyone?). As the title implies, on this particular occasion, I had a few extra baby aubergines lurking around in the fridge. In the end, I decided to use them to make a quick and simple bhorta (or Satni as we call it in the area of Bangladeshi my family are from), which would loosely translate to chutney in English. In simple terms, it is just a process of mashed aubergines/eggplant along with some onion, chilli and coriander. I decided to leave the aubergines slightly chunky for a bit of texture rather than completely puree them. A subtle smokey taste is added to the dish by pan roasting the aubergine and onion.    

Though a simple and economical dish, bhortas are a great alternative to curries as they are light and fresh tasting. As you can eat them cold, they are great for warmer days when you might not fancy eating something hot. There is just a hint of spice from the fresh green chillis and the few drops of mustard oil, however it is subtle and complements the overall fresh notes of the bhorta.

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Individual Homity Pies

Hello all, I’m coming at you today with my version of a traditional British Homity Pie. I will confess, I’d never heard of this dish up until a few weeks ago when I stumbled across it online. Apparently, it dates back to World War Two where this meat-free dish served as a rationing meal. It is an open vegetable pie and usually consists of a pastry case filled with an onion, potato and leek filling. 

I came across a version of mini filo homity pies on Great British Chefs and immediately loved the look of them. Using filo is great shortcut instead of making your own pastry, and a little lighter on the old waist too. Though I used some of the traditional filling ingredients of onion, potato and cheese, I decided to add some kale and peas instead of leek for some colour and sweetness. I also topped the pies with some red chilli and spring onion which is great for adding some spice and a little bit of texture.

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