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Charred miso eggplant with nori and sesame

Nasu dengaku is one of Japan's most popular exports for a reason. Get ready to fire up that grill.

By Lisa Featherby
  • Serves 6
  • 20 mins preparation
  • 15 mins cooking
Charred miso eggplant with nori and sesame

We've grilled this glazed eggplant, known as nasu dengaku, in the oven, but if you have a charcoal barbecue it will work wonders.


  • 3 eggplant (about 400gm each) halved lengthways, flesh scored in a cross-hatch pattern
  • rice bran oil, for brushing
  • spring onion, cut into julienne, to serve
  • toasted nori, roasted sesame seeds, and tatsoi cress (optional), to serve
  • rice (optional), to serve
Miso glaze
  • 75 gm (1⁄4 cup) shiro (white) miso paste
  • 2 tbsp mirin
  • 1 tbsp light soy sauce or shoyu (see note)
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
Three-flavour dressing
  • 2 tsp light soy sauce or shoyu
  • 1½ tsp brown rice vinegar
  • 1 tsp sesame oil


  • 1
    For miso glaze, combine ingredients in a bowl.
  • 2
    Preheat oven grill to high heat and line a baking tray with baking paper. Brush eggplant with oil, season with salt and place on tray cut-side up. Grill until golden and just tender (8-10 minutes). Brush eggplant flesh liberally with glaze, then grill until charred and sticky (2-3 minutes). Or set up a barbecue for indirect grilling and grill eggplant flesh-side down over high heat.
  • 3
    For three-flavour dressing, combine ingredients in a bowl.
  • 4
    Drizzle eggplant with dressing, top with spring onion, nori, sesame seeds and tatsoi cress and serve.


A glass of umami-rich homemade kombucha. Drink suggestion by Max Allen

  • Author: Lisa Featherby