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Sauted Eggplant with Capsicum and Yogurt – Turkish style

Köpoğlu

Cuisine: Turkish
Region: Istanbul

This is a classic family/home cooking recipe from Istanbul. A bit spicy for Western palates, but well, it’s very much worth it.

Serves: 4
Cooking time: 20 min
You need: a saucepan and a bowl
Notes: requires soaking the eggplants for 30 min

Ingredients

  • 2 eggplants (aubergines)
  • 1 glass (cup) olive oil
  • 1 red capsicum (red spicy pepper), seeded and cut into squares
  • 1 green capsicum (green spice pepper), seeded and cut into squares
  • 2 garlic cloves, grated
  • 3 tomatoes, diced
  • 125g (4+1/2 oz) thick yogurt (Turkish or Greek-style or Labneh)

Instructions

Preparation

  1. Peel and dice the eggplants, and put in a large bowl.
  2. Cover with salted water, and leave to soak for 30 minutes; squeeze the pieces out well and pat dry with paper towel.

Cooking

  1. Peel and dice the eggplants, and put in a large bowl.
  2. Turn the fire on to medium-high.
  3. Add the olive oil in a large saucepan and put the saucepan on the fire.
  4. Wait for a beat or two and add the eggplants to the saucepan.
  5. Saute the eggplants for 8–10 minutes – until the eggplants are soft and start to brown.
  6. Using a slotted spoon (or even a fork, if you wish) move the eggplants to a plate. Don’t drain the olive oil, you’ll need it for the next rounds.
  7. Return the saucepan to the fire.
  8. Add the capsicums. They saute a lot faster than the eggplants.
  9. When ready, remove the capsicums from the saucepan. Put them on a paper towel to drain off the oil.
  10. In the same saucepan saute the garlic for a minute or so, then add the tomatoes.
  11. Cook over medium heat for 5 minutes, or until the tomatoes are soft and start to breakdown.
  12. Arrange the eggplant and capsicum in a dish, then top with the tomatoes.
  13. In a small bowl, whisk the yoghurt with a little salt.
  14. Once the vegetables have cooled, top with the yoghurt and serve.

Notes on the Sauted Eggplant with Capsicum and Yogurt – Turkish style

  • This dish is to be savoured warm, not hot.
  • Remember: the point here is to merely saute the vegetables, not fry them.
  • Runny yogurt will not work very well with this recipe.
  • Speaking of yogurt, try to find sheep or goat yogurt, if available.