Turkish Recipes: Eggplant Salad

In the UK, we call them aubergines but a more common word for those plump, dark vegetables appears to be eggplant. As there are people from various parts of the world likely to be seeing this post, let’s go with the more universal eggplant for this particular Turkish recipe.

Eggplants (or Aubergines)

Eggplants are difficult to escape in Turkish cuisine

Think of any recipe you could create using eggplants and the chances are it’s already an established dish in Turkish cuisine. There’s even an eggplant jam! Turkey loves its eggplants and eggplant recipes have appeared previously on this blog: in October, we made Turkish musakka and last summer, we shared a hot weather favourite of ours; Ekşili Patlıcan (sour eggplant).

Today’s Turkish recipe is another favourite – we’ve inevitably learnt to love eggplant over the years – especially in the searing Fethiye summer temperatures. These days, we’re grazing rather than sitting down to big meals. The fridge is full of Turkish meze dishes that we can just dip into whenever we feel like it and this particular meze is sat in the fridge right now.

Patlıcan Salatası (Roasted Eggplant Salad)

Eggplant salads appear in most meze fridges in the restaurants of Turkey. They differ from restaurant to restaurant – and from region to region – but all use the same basic ingredients. This recipe is how we make patlıcan salatası. With regards to the ingredients, you can play around with the amounts you use because it’s all about your personal taste.

Eggplants & Peppers

Eggplants and peppers

  • Preheat your oven to 220 degrees.
  • Arrange your eggplants and a couple of red peppers on a baking tray and place in the oven for between 20 and 30 minutes – until the eggplants have softened. The smell in your kitchen will be amazing!
  • Once roasted, remove the vegetables from the oven and leave to cool.
  • Peel and deseed your red peppers, (the skin will peel off really easily) roughly chop them and add them to a bowl.
Roasted Eggplants & Peppers

Now it’s time to scrape the middles from your eggplants.

  • Run your knife lengthways from top to bottom along the eggplant and allow it to fall open.
  • Don’t worry about getting every last one but remove the majority of the seeds by gently scraping a teaspoon through them while holding the stalk of the eggplant. Discard the seeds.
  • Now scrape the rest of the flesh away from the skin, roughly chop and add to your peppers.
  • Add a handful of chopped parsley.
  • Now add salt, crushed garlic, olive oil and vinegar. I did 2 large cloves of garlic, maybe 3 or 4 dessert spoonfuls of olive oil and 2 or 3 dessert spoonfuls of vinegar but it’s completely up to you. Just keep tasting it till you’re happy with it. We love the tangy vinegar flavours and the strong garlic. Some people add lemon juice, too.
Roasted Eggplant Salad

Roasted Eggplant Salad Served On Toasted Bread

  • Mix all the ingredients together and leave to chill in the fridge for a while.
  • Once chilled, remove your patlıcan salatası from the fridge, lightly toast some bread and take them all outside.
  • Sit in the sunshine, add a spoonful of patlıcan salatası to your toast…and just savour those flavours as you crunch through the crusty, toasted bread.

If it’s cold where you are right now, you’ll have to use your imagination for this last bit.

For lots of traditional Turkish recipes, try this book from Amazon…

Take a look over all of our own Turkish recipes on the blog.

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  1. Ha, finally a recipe that even I can follow. No cooking involved. I must try making the salad myself.

  2. @ Inka: Good luck with making it. Although, don’t forget about roasting your vegetables. 😉

  3. Would you believe eggplants are big in Vietnam? Darling Man does a great garlicy eggplant dish. I don’t know the recipe but I assume fish sauce is involved. It is totally wicked!

    Perhaps some day he can cook it for you…. somewhere in the world. I’ll do the salad and open the wine. 🙂

  4. @ Barbara: Eggplants should be big everywhere. We love them! They’re so expensive in the UK so it’s nice to have them to hand, here in Turkey. The Vietnamese salad sounds VERY interesting if fish sauce is involved. Where shall we meet, then? 😉

  5. I love the creamy Turkish eggplant salad – just the thing for today’s lunch.

  6. @ Italian Notes: Ours didn’t last too long in the fridge. Less than a day, I think. 🙂

  7. Hi,

    I am turkish and when I started to learn English at school which was around 12 years ago. We were tought PATLICAN means AUBERGİNE.

    Anyway,as you can guess that even when I was at university, I had to take english courses to improve it. The teacher was American and I was trying to describe THİS RECİPE!!! And he didnt know what is AUBERGİNE. I was totally surprised so I had to go to the board and draw it 😉

    But, still I prefer using AUBERGİNE, it sound much better than EGGPLANT, it is my opinion;)

    And THİS RECİPE is one of my favourite salads! By the way, when it is too hot in summer, we also add yogurt mixed with smashed garlic to this mixture. ( so not lemon or vinegar)

    it is very delicious too 😉

  8. @ Anonymous: Thanks so much for your lovely comments. I think there’s only this post where we tried the eggplant system. We’ve gone back to aubergine since then because it just feels more right.:)

    I’ve heard about the aubergine salad with the yoghurt in in the past. Will have to give that a try when the weather warms up.

  9. What type of vinegar do you use? I love this salad so happy I found the recipe I’ll have a go myself! Thank you.

    • The main vinegar in Turkey is grape vinegar, Carolina. It’s a bit lighter than a standard malt vinegar so if you use that, just don’t use as much. I guess a sherry vinegar might do the trick, too. 🙂 It’s supposed to be tangy so don’t worry too much about the strong flavour.

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