Miso-charred aubergine, tahini mayonnaise, spicy fermented kohlrabi and dukkah

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Joey O'Hare's inventive miso-charred aubergine salad recipe is full of deep and complex flavours, served with spicy fermented kohlrabi, a rich tahini mayonnaise and crunchy, aromatic dukkah. To make this recipe vegan, swap the fish sauce in the ferment to light soy sauce, and use maple syrup to glaze the aubergine instead of honey.

First published in 2017

With regards its culinary origins this dish is perhaps a little confused, yet it’s flavour is bold, harmonious and so exciting. The way the juices from the spicy fermented kohlrabi mingle with the tahini mayo is fantastic; it’s perfect mopped up with fresh sourdough. And the crunch of the dukkah is an awesome contrast to the soft and yielding aubergine flesh.

Please note, I do include fish sauce, or nam pla, in the spicy fermented turnip recipe to give an authentic kimchi flavour. I also char the aubergine with honey, but to keep things wholly vegan feel free to use maple syrup or agave.

The recipe for the spicy fermented kohlrabi is far larger than you will need for four people; it will last indefinitely in the fridge and is fabulous in so many quick recipes, including simple egg-fried rice and greens. Likewise the quantity of dukkah is large; it is brilliant to have to hand to jazz up all manner of vegetarian dishes, and will last up to a month in a sealed container at room temperature.

This recipe serves 4 people as a starter, or light lunch if accompanied with sourdough bread and a green salad.





Spicy fermented kohlrabi

Tahini mayonnaise

  • 2 tbsp of tahini
  • 2 tbsp of almond milk, (or any nut milk)
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • 1 tbsp of cider vinegar, preferably live
  • 4 tbsp of olive oil
  • salt
  • pepper



  • Kilner jar
  • High-power blender
  • Food processor


Preheat the oven to 140°C/gas mark 1
Begin by making the fermented kohlrabi – it takes 1 week to ferment so bare this in mind. Rinse your jars well and then place in the oven until they have dried completely (to sterilise). Remember to remove the rubber seals first
Blend all the ingredients (apart from the diced kohlrabi) in a high-speed blender to make a smooth paste. This will be the marinade in which to submerge and ferment the kohlrabi
Place the diced kohlrabi to a large mixing bowl and mix the kimchi paste with the kohlrabi
Pack this tightly into the jar (now cooled), making sure that all the kohlrabi is submerged below the water line. This is important as below the water the environment is ideal for lactic acid bacteria to grow, above the water line mould can grow too and compromise the ferment
If needs be, trim the base of the kohlrabi to fit in the neck of the jar, to form a bung. When the lid is closed this will put pressure on the diced kohlrabi and keep everything submerged. Rinse it well first
Place the jar on a small plate and leave at room temperature and out of direct sunlight for 1 week. Burp the jar each day, to release the carbon dioxide that is given off during fermentation. If you prefer a stronger fermented flavour you can leave it at room temperature for another few days. Once the texture and flavour are to your liking, place the jar in the fridge where fermentation will slow down and it will last for several months
To make the dukkah, blitz all of the ingredients together in a food processor, leaving some texture
For the tahini mayonnaise, place the tahini, nut milk, lemon juice, cider vinegar, salt and pepper in a small mixing bowl and whisk to combine
Slowly pour in the oil in a steady stream and whisk all the while to emulsify
Now prepare the aubergine. In a small mixing bowl combine the miso, honey and sesame oil and whisk to combine
Slice the aubergine into 1cm thick slices, and score each side with a crisscross pattern. Marinate the aubergine in the miso, honey and sesame paste, and rub gently
Preheat the oven to 220°C/gas mark 8 and place an oven rack near the top (if you can have the grill on simultaneously that’s ideal!)
Line a large baking tray with parchment paper and spread the sliced aubergine out evenly. Once preheated roast the aubergine for 12–16 minutes until soft and charred
To serve, spoon some tahini mayonnaise onto each plate. Layer on top the charred aubergine and scatter with dukkah. Spoon over the spicy fermented kohlrabi and be sure to spoon over some of the ferment liquor as extra dressing – this is packed with flavour and probiotic goodness

Joey has worked as a chef for ten years, both in London restaurants and in private homes across the UK and abroad. Joey’s latest project, Food with Time, explores ideas of sustainability within the food and farming industries, as well as the importance of a seasonal, veg-centric diet for both the environment and the individual.

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