Ponzu Braised Aubergine & Lontong Rice
with peanut dressing, yoghurt and simple tabouleh
A quick mid-week meal, yet full of flavour! And if you take count out the cooking time of the Lontong Rice, this might only take you 20 minutes! Lontong Rice is basically rice cakes, which you cook in a small bag and then leave to cool down. We really fell in love with it recently, and you can find it in any asian supermarket! Bang together a quick tabouleh to bring in some freshness to the dish, and don’t be afraid to change it up to your own creative insights!
2 packs of Lontong rice (125 gr per pack), or use normal rice if you cannot find it
1 tablespoon of butter (or use neutral oil to keep it vegan)
2 tablespoons of Ponzu (or miso/soy sauce)
2 tablespoons ginger syrup
150 gr peanuts
1 clove garlic
1 red chili
Half a thumb size peace of ginger
5 tablespoons neutral oil
1 teaspoon each of ground cumin and oregano
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 lime or lemon
A few fresh veggies for a side tabouleh: cucumber, tomato, spring onions, parsley
Start by cooking your Lontong Rice in a pot of salted boiling water. The idea is that you place the bags of rice directly into the water (no the bags won’t melt). Cook them for 60 minutes and then leave to cool down in the fridge. If you’re in a hurry you could also use the freezer for this. After the Lontong has cooled down, the starch from the rice will have solidified. Once you take off the bags, you can cut the Longtong in cubes, strips, triangles, whatever you feel like..! Ready to serve.
In the meantime, you can prepare the other elements. Cut the aubergine into long strips. Heat up a frying pan on medium heat with some oil. Place the aubergine in the pan and try to caramelize all the surface areas nicely golden. Then add the butter, ponzu and ginger syrup. Turn down the heat to low and cover with a lid. Leave to simmer for 5 to 10 minutes until nice and soft.
In another small frying pan, shortly dry-roast the peanuts, then place into a pestle & mortar or a food processor (safe a few for garnish). In the same pan, dry-roast the chopped garlic, ginger and chili. Bang or blitz it up together coarsely. Then also add the neutral oil, cumin, oregano, apple cider vinegar, a pinch of salt, and juice of half a lime (to taste). Blitz it up once more. Taste for seasoning.
Knock together a quick tabouleh by simply chopping all the veg and herbs up and mixing it together with some salt, pepper, vinegar and/or lime juice. Ready for serving! Some nice cubes of Lontong, a few strips of that silken aubergine, tabouleh on the side, a big dollop of yoghurt topped with the spicy peanut dressing. Cheerio!