Sicilian pesto and grilled eggplant

Frank Camorra
Sicilian pesto can also be folded through warm pasta, used to top grilled prawns or smeared over pan-fried chicken breast.
Sicilian pesto can also be folded through warm pasta, used to top grilled prawns or smeared over pan-fried chicken breast. Photo: Marina Oliphant
Difficulty
Easy
Dietary
Egg-free

Eggplant goes well with an interesting take on pesto that is popular in Sicily, with their love of almonds, ricotta and chilli. This versatile pesto can also be folded through warm pasta, used to top grilled prawns or smeared over pan-fried chicken breast.

Ingredients

1/2 bunch basil

1/4 bunch flat-leaf parsley

100g almonds, blanched and toasted

1 garlic clove

1/4 mild green chilli, seeds included

100g fresh ricotta

50g grated pecorino

250ml olive oil

2 medium eggplants

Salt and pepper

Method

1. Place herbs, almonds, garlic and chilli in a food processor and pulse to a fine crumb.

2. Add cheeses then add enough oil to make a smooth, thick sauce.

3. Slice eggplants in half lengthways, then each half into 4 long wedges.

4. Sprinkle salt over eggplant and leave for 15 minutes, then rinse and dry.

5. Preheat grill, season eggplant and brush with oil, then grill until golden and cooked. Serve warm with pesto.

* Leftover pesto will keep in the fridge for a week.

* Serve with a small green salad.

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