Roast aubergine with anchovies and oregano

by Yotam Ottolenghi


2 medium aubergines, cut into 2cm-thick discs
Salt and black pepper
145ml olive oil
1½ tbsp oregano leaves
20g anchovy fillets, finely chopped
1 tbsp white-wine vinegar
1 small garlic clove, peeled and crushed
5g parsley, roughly chopped


Heat the oven to 220C/425F/gas mark 7. In a large bowl, mix the aubergine with half a teaspoon of salt. Transfer to two large oven trays lined with baking paper and brush with 70ml oil: you want to coat both sides of the aubergine discs. Bake for 35 minutes, until dark golden brown and cooked through, then remove and set aside to cool.

Heat 45ml oil in a very small saucepan or frying pan on a high flame. Test the oil is hot enough by dropping in an oregano leaf: if it sizzles, goes crisp straight away and turns a brighter shade of green, the oil is ready (if the oil is too hot, the oregano will go dark green). When the oil is at the right temperature, add a tablespoon of oregano leaves and cook for 10 seconds, just until crisp, then remove with a slotted spoon and set aside on a plate lined with kitchen paper to drain. Take the pan off the heat.

In a small bowl, whisk the anchovies, vinegar, garlic, an eighth of a teaspoon of salt and a quarter-teaspoon of pepper. Slowly pour in the remaining oil, whisking continuously, until well combined.

Finely chop the remaining oregano and put it in a large bowl with the aubergine and parsley. Pour over the anchovy dressing, gently toss, then transfer the salad to a platter. Sprinkle over the fried oregano and serve.

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