Jeannie is peeling and pricking the aubergines with a fork.
It's that time of year again: a glut of aubergines coming up from the vegetable garden every day, and one of the ways to enjoy them in another guise through winter and spring, is to candy them and flavour them with ginger. They are perfect with manchego cheese, or can be used to decorate a honey ice cream.
The process starts 1st thing in the morning, so that you have time to make the first sugar syrup before retiring to bed on day 1. Start with peeling them, and pricking them all over with a fork.
The aubergines are then brought to a simmer with 2 or three fresh ginger roots cut into small chunks, and the zest of an unwaxed lemon. To begin with there is a tendency for them to float, so they must be weighed down with a plate to keep them submerged. the pan is then taken off the heat and allowed to cool until evening.
In the early evening, fish them out, one by one with a slotted spoon. Add sugar to the water. This time we put in 500gr, or roughly 1 lb. Bring the weak syrup to a simmer, ensuring the sugar is all melted, then gently drop the aubergines back into the liquid. allow them to come to a simmer again and cook them gently for about 15 minutes. with the plate over them.
Next morning fish them out once more with a slotted spoon and place them in a deep bowl as they will shed their syrup. Add the next 500gr/1lb sugar to the syrup in the pan, bring to a simmer, and place the aubergines back in the liquid along with any liquid they may have shed. Bring back to a simmer, cover with a plate, weigh them down and stand them until evening. ........more to follow!