Griddled aubergine partners beautifully with the chewy, flavour-packed farro, served drizzled with a coriander oil and a dollop Greek yogurt on the side. This is great as part of a larger mezze table.
2 aubergines/eggplants, cut into 2-cm/¾-inch slices
3 tablespoons olive oil, for brushing
2 tablespoons pomegranate molassess
Greek yogurt, to serve
20 g/¾ oz. coriander/cilantro leaves, plus extra to garnish
80 ml/1/3 cup extra-virgin
400 g/14 oz. farro
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
1 long red chilli/chile, deseeded and finely chopped
1 teaspoon salt
800 ml/scant 3½ cups hot water
30 g/1 oz. wild rocket/arugula (optional)
½ a small bunch each of coriander/cilantro, dill and parsley, leaves picked, to garnish
SERVES 4 AS A STARTER
Brush each aubergine/eggplant slice with some oil, then season. Heat a griddle pan or barbecue. When hot, griddle the slices for 2–3 minutes on each side until golden brown and tender. Place the aubergine/eggplant on a serving dish while still warm and drizzle with pomegranate molasses, then cover and set aside until ready to serve.
To make the flavoured oil, blend together the coriander/cilantro and olive oil – you can do this in a jug/pitcher using a hand blender or in a freestanding blender. Set aside.
For the crushed farro, rinse the farro under cold running water, then lightly pound using a mortar and pestle. Heat the oil in a large frying pan/skillet and sauté the garlic and chilli/chile for 3–4 minutes until softened. Add the farro and salt, then add the hot water, a little at a time and simmer over medium heat for 20–25 minutes, until the liquid has been absorbed and the farro is al dente. Remove from heat and stir through the rocket/ arugula, if using, until wilted. Crush the farro a little more.
Uncover the aubergine/eggplant, top with the crushed farro and drizzle with the coriander/cilantro oil. Spoon over some Greek yogurt and scatter over the mixed fresh herbs to garnish.