Do like your meat? don’t want to give it up, but also like the idea of doing a little good for the planet?
Well.. then it is time to adopt the Meat Free Thursday approach. Its is exactly like Meat Free Mondays, but being the rebel that I am, I have adopted it on another day, when there are no sunday roast leftovers to tempt.
All it advocates is just one day a week off. No monotonous diets, no endless restrictions… just one day a week of no meat. Its is all about moderation and you know I am a fan of that. Aside from being a great chance to cleanse the digestive tract and give our bodies a bit of a break, it is also easy on the wallet (we know good meat ain’t cheap), and a chance to play around with new recipes. This one is particularly easy and delicious, if I do say so myself.
If meat is usually the staple on your plate, a good way to avoid missing it is choose dishes like this aubergine dish as a substitute. Aubergine, when baked retains a meaty dense texture. It is also pretty substantial, so you won’t be hankering for a big mack after. Well lets hope not anyway.
Super easy to make, all it takes is a little preparation and marinading time, which can be done in the morning, or even the night before. When you are ready to cook the aubergine simply pop it in a baking tray and bake for half an hour or so. Easy peasy, yes pleasey.
Just a note – In a lot of my recipes I use garlic oil this is because not only do you get the flavour of garlic without the hassle of chopping it and getting it all over your hands. Also, because I am allergic to soy, I use a similar tasting coconut aminos. It is harder to come by, soif you dont suffer with any allergies you can use the regular sort.
For the Marinade
- 3 medium Aubergines
- 1 thumb sized piece of Ginger, grated
- 50ml Tamari, or coconut aminos
- 2 tbs Garlic Oil , or Olive Oil and a grated clove of Garlic
- 1 tbs Apple Cider Vinegar
- 1 tsp Blackstrap Molasses
- 2 tsp Honey or Maple Syrup
- A pinch of Chilli Powder (optional)
For the Rice
- 350g Basmati Rice
- 50g Goji Berries
- 4 Spring Onions
- 4 tbs Coriander, chopped
Wash the aubergine, dry them and split them down the middle, vertically.
Use a sharp knife to make criss cross incisions into the flesh (so the marinade can seep in)
Whisk the all the marinade ingredients together in a bowl, then evenly distribute by pouring over the aubergines. Leave the aubergines to marinate for at least 30 minutes. A couple of hours is best.
Preheat the oven to 200 degrees celsius/ Gas Mark 5
Place the halved aubergines in a baking tray and cover with foil. Put them in the oven to cook for 20mins, then remove the foil and cook for a further 20-25 mins
Meanwhile place the rice in a sieve and was throughly under the cold tap. Place it into a medium saucepan and cover over with water by a couple of inches. Cook the rice according to packet instruction – approximately 15 minutes.
Once the rice is cooked take it off the heat and gently fold through a couple of table spoons of garlic oil, the goji berries, spring onion, chopped coriander and a good pinch of salt.
Once the aubergines are cooked, remove them from the oven. Divide the rice between bowls scatter over some sesame seeds and fresh coriander and serve.
I finished mine off with a drizzle of my fave tahini lemon sauce but a fried egg would have been equally delicious.