This quick and easy salad is something I rustled up the other day for a vegetarian friend. Normally I would add a spoonful of pounded dried shrimps and season with fish sauce. Still the vegetarian version worked well. Perhaps a handful of chopped roasted peanuts or sesame seeds would add a nice addition for next time.
130g firm tofu, cut into cubes or sticks
1 small green chilli, diced
small handful of coriander, chopped
½ lemon, juiced
2 garlic cloves, sliced
peanut oil to fry garlic and tofu
salt for seasoning
For that intense smoky flavour, pierce the eggplant with a knife to stop it bursting unexpectedly during cooking, then using a tong place over a naked flame to char until the insides are soft and squishy. Alternatively place on an oven tray under a hot grill for 15-25 minutes, turning occasionally.
Next heat enough oil to deep-fry the tofu. Fry them in batches until golden brown and drain on kitchen towel. In a separate saucepan, fry the garlic in some oil until golden and reserve oil for dressing.
When the eggplant is cooked, cut in half and roughly chop. I like to keep the skin on but you can peel it if you wish. Mix with lemon juice, fried tofu, coriander, crispy garlic and chilli. Toss with a tablespoon of garlic oil and season with salt.
Cooking time: 15-25 mins