Andalusian battered aubergine bites

A wonderful 13th-century vegetarian recipe for fried battered aubergine — a much-used vegetable in Andalusian cuisine — from The Exile’s Cookbook. The dish was known as al-mughaffar (المغفّر), meaning ‘the protected one’, in reference to the batter covering the aubergine.

It requires sweet aubergines, which after being cut up, are boiled before being battered with a mixture of flour, eggs, spices like pepper, saffron and coriander, as well as a sprinkle of murrī. After the batter acquires the required thickness, it’s time to dredge the aubergine slices and fry them until golden brown. It is served with a sprinkling of murrī, but it was sometimes also accompanied by a sauce made with murrī, pepper, coriander, cumin, oregano and garlic.

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