Real Food. Healthy Fuel. For a Happy Life.

Gluten-Free Roasted Aubergine and Chickpea with Millet Pilaff

IMG_0944Dinner.

And my first blogged recipe.

After lots of deliberation I decided to roast my aubergines and chickpeas and combine it all together with a millet pilaf.

Dare I say it, but it was delicious.  My Alpha, meat loving dinning companion didn’t even ask if he could add meat (I had left over chicken on stand by) and really enjoyed it, which in itself is a minor miracle!  I must say at this point that I am not a vegetarian but I have recently noticed that by reducing the amount of meat I eat I have felt a lot better for it.

This dish works because the aubergines literally melt in your mouth and are perfectly offset by the texture of the roasted chickpeas, which together are bound by the immense tasting millet pilaf in its rich and heart warming tomato sauce.

Without wanting to big myself up too much and equally being very grateful I’ve had a lucky first break with my first blogged recipe it is bloody delicious and I hope you find it to be too. It’s also just the perfect kind of comfort warming food as the autumnal nights begin to draw in.

The other great news is that Millet is often called ‘the queen of the grains’ as it is a rich source of silica, which helps detoxify the body and has strong antifungal qualities.  Aubergines are rich in bioflavonids which help renew arteries prevent strokes and hemorrhages. Whilst finally chickpeas, high in fibre and protein make you feel full longer and also reduce cholesterol levels.

So not only being a little bit of heaven on a plate you are also literally worshiping your body at the same time… halos all round.  So in an effort to redress this saintly hood to something approaching a normal everyday balance I enjoyed my roasted aubergine and chickpea millet pilaf with couple of glasses of a nice white. YUM.

ROASTED AUBERGINE AND CHICKPEA  MILLET PILAFF

Prep time:  15 mins

Cooking time: 40 mins

Feeds 2 very comfortably as a main meal or 4/6 as a starter

INGREDIENTS:

For the Roasted Aubergine and Chickpeas:

1 large aubergine or 2 small

400g tin of chick peas

25ml of good balsamic vinegar

4 large tablespoons of olive oil (plus an extra slug if needed)

Salt and pepper

For the Millet Pilaf :

2 teaspoons of olive oil

1 stick of celery, finely chopped

1 small onion, finely chopped

1 teaspoon of ground coriander

2 cloves of garlic, crushed or grated

125g (4 1/2 0z) millet

400ml vegetable stock (gluten-free if using cubes or powder)

200ml tomato passata (possibly an additional splash later if needed)

2-3 dashes of gluten-free soy sauce

1 tablespoon of chopped parsley or 2 tablespoons of frozen chopped parsley

TO COOK:

1. Turn oven on to 200c, gas mark 6, or 400f

2. peel the aubergines, discard the skin and dice in to large edible chunks

3. open tin of chick peas and rinse with cold water, shaking off any excess water

4. put aubergines and chickpeas in a roasting tin and throughly mix with the olive oil

5. place in the warmed oven for approx. 40 mins, until the chick peas are slightly golden (crispy to the touch but soft inside when eaten)

6. now for the millet pilaf; gently fry the onion and celery in the olive oil until the onion is softened

7. add the coriander and garlic and stir for another 3 to 5 mins

8. add the millet to the pan and stir for approx 2 mins, until the millet gives off a nutty aroma

9. add the stock and tomato passata bring to the boil then simmer for 20 mins uncovered

10. check on the aubergine and chick peas, toss everything around in the pan and add an extra glug of olive oil if needed (the chick peas and aubergines appear dry)

11. after 40 or so mins take the aubergine and chick peas out of the oven and mix with the balsamic vinegar and season with salt and pepper and leave to stand until the millet pilaf is ready

12. after 20 mins if the millet has a slight bite add a dash of water and tomato passata and cook for a few minutes longer

13. when the millet is tender remove from the heat stir in the *parsley, aubergines and chickpeas, taste season with s&p, serve and enjoy.

* I use Waitrose frozen chopped Parsley Delicious, fresh and cost effective.

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