Make the most of the cooler weather and throw an impromptu party outside with these simple snacks – just add great company and sparkling wit
From aubergine and tahini crush to red and yellow tomato bruschetta, dip into Silvena Rowe’s selection of tasty party titbits; plus, the domestic diva answers your kitchen queries.
Aubergine and tahini crush
Cooking time: 40 mins Serves 4
2 medium aubergines 1 lemon, halved 1 tbsp tahini 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil 2 garlic cloves, crushed 1 pinch ground cumin, plus extra for sprinkling 1 tsp sumac, plus extra for sprinkling TO SERVE 1/4 red onion, finely sliced into rings handful flat-leaf parsley, chopped pitta bread, cut into wedges
1 Cook the aubergines over a gas or electric ring, turning now and again until soft in the middle and charred all over on the outside. Alternatively roast them on a baking tray in a preheated oven at 200°C for 35-40 mins (this will result in a darker dip).
2 Once the aubergines are cool enough to handle, peel off the skin, place in a bowl and cover with water. Slice one of the lemon halves, add to the bowl and leave for a couple of hours.
3 Drain and chop the aubergines, discarding excess seeds. Place the pulp in a bowl and beat with a spoon. Add tahini, olive oil, garlic, cumin, sumac and some salt and pepper and mix well. Taste and adjust the seasoning, adding the juice from the remaining lemon half if necessary.
4 Put the dip in a bowl or shape into quenelles and garnish with onion rings and parsley. Sprinkle with cumin and sumac and serve with pitta bread.