Warm Aubergine, Quinoa and Tofu Salad

A delicious salad that I love to eat warm but also works cold. Quinoa is a wonderful ancient grain that is gluten free and easy to digest. It is particularly good for those with a kapha and pitta imbalance. Tofu is a healthy way of getting our protein and should be included in all diets (some with a vata imbalance may find it hard to digest, if you know you do, you can substitute with cooked chicken). There are some disagreements on aubergines, like all other vegetables it has a lot of immune boosting properties and heart healthy properties but as a family of the nightshade family, it can aggravate allergies and arthritis so eat in moderation if you are prone to these.

Active time 20 minutes

Serves 2

2 tsp. vegetable oil
1 medium purple aubergine, cut into 1cm thick halves or quarter moons
25 large mint leaves, shredded
1½ tbs. roasted pine nuts, roughly chopped (kapha please avoid, it will still be delicious)
200g tofu, cut into cubes
50g quinoa, boiled according to the packet instructions
3 handfuls of small lettuce leaves to mix in
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

dressing
1½-2 tbs. vegetable oil
2 tsp. fresh ginger paste
2-3 tsp. tbs. lemon juice or to taste
1¼ tsp. raw cane sugar
Preheat the oven to 180C.

Use your fingers to rub a little oil on both sides of all the aubergine pieces. Lay on a large, non-stick baking sheet and place in the oven. Add the tofu after 10 minutes and cook for another 6-8 minutes or until the aubergine pieces yield completely when pierced.

Whisk together the ingredients for the dressing until the sugar has completely dissolved, season to taste. Place the hot, cooked aubergines, tofu and quinoa into a large bowl along with the leaves, mint and pine nuts, pour over the dressing, mix well and serve.