When your kids are fussy and you want them to eat stuff, you cover it in crunchy coating and serve it with a dipping sauce, right?
Does it work?
Not if you’re me!
The Smalls, who is my dinnertime kryptonite, nibbled one single tiny piece of polenta and declared herself done. No sauce, no nothing.
Me, on the other hand, ate all of this and then some. I also ended up making extra sauce because it went so well on everything else! The best part about this recipe is that it’s so easy. Not only do you make eggplant edible, you make a baked veg crispy, and you have a great side, lunch, or appetiser for your next gathering.
Crispy Eggplant Chips
Really, all you need to do is slice your eggplant into batons, dip in beaten egg mixed with a little water, and then coat in spiced polenta. For the polenta I do salt and pepper as standard and change it up depending on the mood – paprika, cayenne, cumin, and oregano (separately!) are all good choices. So is lemon zest.
Bake in a 200C oven until crispy and browned on the outside, and soft on the inside, about 15-20 minutes. The polenta is crispy no matter what so you don’t have to wait ages or use tons of oil like you would if you used regular breadcrumbs.
Sweet Chilli Mayo
Ok so you can make your own mayo here (I recommend it, BBC Food has a pretty legit recipe), or you can use half egg mayo and half Japanese Kewpie mayo, maybe half a cup each, with 1/3 of a cup of sweet chilli sauce. A squeeze of lemon if you wish, et voila!
To a cup of whatever milk you use, add a squirt of either lemon or white vinegar, and stir. Leave to sit for a while and coat your eggplant into this instead of the egg. Use vegan mayo for the sauce. Yum!
I hope your kids like it better than mine did! *cries*