Chefs' Recipes

Jacqui Challinor's smoked eggplant and pomegranate salad

For lovers of eggplant.

By Jacqui Challinor
  • 45 mins preparation
  • 10 mins cooking (plus cooling)
  • Serves 4
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"This dish is so versatile," says Jacqui Challinor, executive chef of Sydney's Nomad. "It works well as a starter with bread or pairs nicely with roasted meat or fish."


  • 2 medium eggplants
  • 1 lemon, thinly sliced
  • 2 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 100 ml extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, finely grated
  • 2 red shallots, finely chopped
  • 2 large ripe tomatoes, seeded and finely chopped
  • Arils from ½ small pomegranate
  • ½ tsp cumin seeds, toasted and crushed


  • 1
    Pierce eggplant all over with a fork. Place a cake rack over a gas burner on high and cook eggplant directly over the flame until skin is blackened and flesh is very tender (10 mins). Place in a colander to drain and cool.
  • 2
    Fill a large bowl with water and add lemon slices. Peel blackened skin off eggplant, then dip eggplant into the lemon water to remove any excess skin; drain in a colander.
  • 3
    Whisk vinegar, oil, garlic and a pinch of sea salt flakes in a bowl. Stir in shallot and tomato. Gently pull eggplant apart into long strips. Add eggplant to tomato mixture and gently fold to combine. Season to taste.
  • 4
    Transfer eggplant mixture to a serving dish. Sprinkle with pomegranate arils and cumin to serve.