Grilled Eggplant Lohn Relish with Shrimp (หล่นมะเขือเผากุ้งสด

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Lohn relish of grilled eggplant (หลนมะเขือเผากุ้งสด) captivates with its subtle contrasts and complex layering of flavors. Central to this dish is grilled eggplant, which is known for its inherent bitterness due to phenolic compounds like chlorogenic acid. However, this bitterness succumbs to a delightful transformation when the eggplant is simmered in coconut cream. The fats and sugars in the coconut cream effectively mask these bitter notes, resulting in a deep, satisfying savory relish that is both well-balanced and rounded.

Accompanying the eggplant are roasted shallots and garnet-blushed grilled tomatoes. The grilled tomatoes not only add natural sweetness and brightness to the dish, but also contribute to its visual charm via their muted orangey reds. This color palette complements the eggplant’s earthy, slightly sweet taste, represented through rich, velvety white-green hues. The interplay of colors in the dish mirror the complexity of its flavors.

The minced shrimp meat introduces a briny sweetness and a contrasting texture. The relish is seasoned to a sour-sweet leading salty to follow flavor profile, enhancing the smoky sweetness imparted by the grilled ingredients and creating a palette of flavor and color that is as attractive as it is delicious.

To cook the dish, start by grilling the eggplants, tomatoes and unpeeled whole shallots over charcoal until they are fully cooked. Once done, peel the eggplants and set them aside, and peel and slice the shallots. Then peel the tomatoes, remove the seeds, and dice them into small pieces. Set the diced tomatoes aside.

Next, peel and devein the shrimp and collect its tomalley. Mince the shrimp by smashing them individually on a cutting board; use a heavy cleaver so the shrimp meat achieves a springy texture. Set the prepared shrimp aside.

In a pot, gently simmer coconut middle cream (กลางกะทิ) and some water over low heat, to prevent the fat from separating. Add the shrimp tomalley and mix well – this step charges the dish with the shrimp element. Then, add the sliced fresh shallots and sliced roasted shallots to the pot, followed by the prepared minced shrimp and the roasted, peeled and sliced grilled eggplants and grilled tomatoes.

Season the dish with fish sauce, adjusting the quantity to your taste. Once satisfied with the saltiness, add equal amounts of tamarind paste and palm sugar to the mixture. Next, add some bruised fresh bird’s eye chili for heat. Finally, stir in fresh coriander leaves to finish the relish.

To serve, present the dish with fresh vegetables, additional coriander leaves and Chinese cabbage.

มะเขือเผากุ้งสด (มะเขือเผากุ้งสดแ ; Grilled Eggplant Lohn Relish with Shrimp)

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Prep Time 15 minutes

Cook Time 15 minutes

Course Relish, Chili Relish

Cuisine Thai

  • 1/3 cup minced shrimp meat (เนื้อกุ้งสับ)
  • 2 long eggplants (มะเขือยาว) grilled over charcoals.
  • large tomatoes (มะเขือเทศ) grilled over charcoals, peeled, deseeded and diced.

For the lohn

  • 1 cup coconut cream (หัวกะทิ)
  • shallots (หอมแดง) Roasted and thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup shallots (หอมแดง) fresh and thinly sliced

Season to a bold sour-salty-sweet profile

  • 1 part fish sauce (น้ำปลา)
  • 1 part tamarind paste (น้ำมะขามเปียก)
  • 1 part palm sugar (น้ำตาลมะพร้าว)
  • sea salt (เกลือทะเล)
  • 1/4 cup three colors of chilies – red, green, yellow and chilies (พริกสามสี) sliced thinly, crosswise
  • 4 pieces fresh bird’s eye chili (kee noo suan) (พริกขี้หนูสวนสด) bruised
  • Grill the eggplants and large tomatoes over charcoal until fully cooked.

  • Peel the eggplants and roughly chop them. Set aside.

  • Peel the tomatoes, remove the seeds, and dice into small pieces. Set aside.

  • Roast the shallots unpeeled. When cooked, peel and slice the roasted shallots lengthwise along their growth axis.

  • Peel and devein the shrimp. Collect the tomalley from the shrimp heads.

  • Roughly mince the shrimp by smashing them individually on a cutting board, using a heavy cleaver to achieve a springy texture. Set aside.

  • In a pot, gently simmer the coconut middle cream (กลางกะทิ), with some water. Simmer on low heat to prevent the coconut from separating into oil.

  • Add the shrimp tomalley and mix well to infuse the shrimp flavor.

  • Once cooked, add the sliced fresh and roasted shallots.10. Add the sliced grilled eggplants and sliced grilled tomatoes.

  • Add the minced shrimp to the pot.

  • Season with fish sauce to taste. Once you are satisfied with the saltiness of the relish, add equal amounts of tamarind paste and palm sugar.

  • Add bruised fresh bird’s eye chili for heat.

  • Stir in fresh coriander leaves to finish the relish.

  • Serve with fresh or boiled vegetables.

Keyword chili relish, naam phrik, nam prik (น้ำพริก), lohn (หลน)

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