Algerian Mchermla Batendjel

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The weekend is finally here, and so is the summer heat, which is why I prepared this  fresh dish with aubergines/eggplants! I love this dish, as it reminds me of my summer’s at my grandmother’s house. We used to prepare this dish in the garden, where we had a little shaded cooking corner. It’s fairly simple, and great when accompanied with some homemade khobz (bread).

I am also participating in Fiesta Friday today! I’ve missed quite a few of these amazing Fiesta’s created by the wonderful host Angie from The Novice Gardener, but I couldn’t miss this week’s as it is Fiesta Friday #80!! If you haven’t joined Fiesta Friday yet, I really encourage you to join the weekend fiesta with wonderful recipes and bloggers.

Serves: 4


  • 3 large aubergines/eggplants or Graffiti Eggplants
  • 8 cloves of garlic
  • 1 teaspoon of caraway powder
  • 1 teaspoon of cumin powder
  • 1 tablespoon of red sweet paprika
  • A pinch of salt
  • A pinch of black pepper
  • Sunflower oil
  • Balsamic vinegar
  • Some water

Procedure: (simple)

  1. Wash and cut the aubergines lengthwise.
  2. In a large frying pan add the sunflower oil (not too much).
  3. Fry the aubergines slices until they become golden brown and put them in a colander.
  4. In the same pan add the chopped garlic, the caraway powder, the cumin powder, the red sweet paprika, the salt and the black pepper.
  5. Stir with a wooden spoon all the ingredients together  add 2 tablespoons of water and continue to cook on a low heat, then and add the aubergines slices.
  6. Cook for 5 minutes and finally drizzle with vinegar.
  7. Transfer the aubergines to an oven dish and refrigerate until the following morning.
  8. Serve as an entrée or between two slices of toasted bread.

This dish is delicious in summer, spicy with the addition of garlic and sour with the vinegar.

Bonne degustation!

PS: This dish can be eaten warm, but trust me it is much better after a few hours inside the refrigerator.

70 Comments Add yours

  1. OMG!!! yes please!!! You know I would love this 🙂 please make this for me???

  2. (Can I just ask…where does the plain flour come into this?)

    1. Opps, I was supposed to remove that! I initially was going to dip the aubergine slices into the flour (before frying them), but then you would have to change the oils, so I opted to do it without the flour! Thanks Elaine 😀 It seems I need another cup of coffee this morning… 😉

      1. Ha ha! No problem…;) x

  3. platedujour says:

    I happen to have 3 eggplants in my fridge and had no clue what to do about them! It looks like you gave me an idea Linda😍😍Have a lovely weekend Hugs xxx btw in 3 weeks I’m going to the South of France Linda 😛

    1. Marta, this recipe is easy and simple even with 3 eggplants 😀 Enjoy the rest of the weekend 😍. I’m not jealous but I will take my revenge 😛. Have a lot of fun and relax, Hugs xxx

  4. Eha says:

    Wonderful! A new eggplant recipe and an interesting but easy one – shall try soonest! But may I ask why caraway and cumin ‘powder’? Why not the seeds? Here Down Under I have not even seen caraway powder tho’ cumin naturally is very common . . .

    1. Thank you so much Eha. In Algerian cuisine we mostly use powders and not seeds, as they dilute in the dish easier/quicker (which enhances the aroma) and also to use them in smaller quantities (a pinch is usually enough). About the caraway powder, it is very rare to find it in powder (even here in Dubai), you can use the seeds and grind them. We always use caraway powder for marinade recipes. I hope this helps! 🙂

      1. Eha says:

        Thank you for the ‘lesson’: I have learned a couple of things here and as caraway seeds do have a very definite flavour [which I do love] shall certainly try them in powder form in my next appropriate marinade as well as the delightful aubergine dish!

  5. I love learning new eggplant recipes & this one looks fabulous Linda!! Thank you for sharing & happy FF 🙂

    1. Thank you so much Naina. Happy FF too! 🙂

  6. ladyredspecs says:

    A new way to prepare eggplant is always welcome, I look forward to trying this soon. Yum

    1. I’m glad you like the recipe and do let me know how it turns out, Sandra! 🙂

  7. Mr Fitz says:

    Superb! As I said on Twitter I am making this today!

    1. Thanks a lot for your trust! 🙂

      1. Mr Fitz says:

        You make great food

  8. Mr Fitz says:

    Oh.. And there is no such thing as eggplants .. Ahem..

  9. Jhuls says:

    Oh yum! I love eggplants, Linda. This dish sounds really amazing. And very easy to prepare. Happy FF and nice to have you back. 🙂 Enjoy the rest of your weekend. xx

    1. Thanks a lot Jhuls. It was yummy and I mopped up the remaining juices from my plate with pleasure 😀 Happy FF too and have a wonderful week! xx

  10. milkandbun says:

    Mmmm love eggplant dishes! I also made eggplant! 😀 have a look!

    1. A happy coincidence Mila 😀 Love eggplant too! 🙂

  11. I’m going to pick up eggplants at the market today, must make this! Sounds absolutely delicious Linda.

    1. Thank you very much, Seana. I hope you will like these eggplants as much as I did! 🙂

  12. Oh I was so drawn to your first photo Linda – this recipe takes eggplants to another level!

    1. Thank you so much Laura for your nice comment. Have a nice week! 🙂

  13. Fairly simple, but yet very flavorful, delectable vegetarian/vegan dish! Is the use of balsamic vinegar your twist? Was something other than vinegar normally used? Persian word for eggplant is bademjan. Sounds similar. 🙂

    1. Thank you Fae 😀 The use of balsamic vinegar is normally used (I wish I came up with the flavor combination 😀 ), but for all Mchermla-based recipes, we use vinegar. Have a lovely week! 🙂

  14. This dish sounds so wonderful (as you see I am being careful and not using the name; being uncertain of how to pronounce it :-)).

    Would you eat it cold or then heat it again after a few hours in the fridge?

    1. Thank you Aruna 😀 No need since it’s best eaten cold, but a warm bread would be nice on the side 🙂

      1. WIll try it! I am brinjal freak.

  15. Food For The Soul says:

    This looks wonderful and such simple flavors….my eggplants are calling to be made 🙂

    1. Thank you so much. I hope you will enjoy the recipe! 🙂

      1. Food For The Soul says:

        It tuned out great:)

      2. Oh, I’m so glad you liked the recipe and thank you for your trust! 🙂

  16. I love simple veggie dishes Linda! I don’t cook eggplant very often but with a recipe like yours it should be easy.

    1. Thank you Judy 😀 Well, it is eggplant season… 😉 Have a lovely week 🙂 x

  17. tentimestea says:

    This sounds lovely, especially after the sit in the fridge. The careful balance of flavours with the spices and then the vinegar must make for a divine dish.

    1. Thank you very much for your kind words. A simple and tasty aubergines! 🙂
      Have a nice day!

  18. Looks delicious and maybe a bit like musaka

    1. Thank you Lynz! Slightly different because of the addition of vinegar, but you’re still right since their both aubergine based dishes 😀

  19. This is amazing Linda. As an ardent lover of aubergines, I am so going to try this. Simple and hearty dish. I bet it would taste heavenly, when warm…

    1. Thank you very much Sonal 😀 I know you are a huge fan of aubergines (like me 😀 ), I recommend eating this dish cold, but served with a nice warm bread! 🙂

  20. skd says:

    Love this dish Linda. I am sure it will be delicious with rice as well as breads. But what I like more about your dishes are the exotic tongue twister names. I love to try out your dishes and serve them to my family with their original titles. Makes them sound more glamorous😉👍

    1. Thank you very much Skd 😀 You’re right, served with warm rice or bread is perfect!

  21. skd says:

    Actually it would help if you would also tell us how they are supposed to be pronounced.

    1. Never thought of doing it before, but that’s a good idea! I’ll start adding phonetic pronunciations (this one would be…. “em-cher-ma-lah bet-tin-jail”) 🙂

      1. skd says:

        Oh Thank you ☺I have been trying to pronounce it in vain. This will be helpful.

  22. chef mimi says:

    oh my gosh this looks so good! love the addition of the balsamic vinegar

    1. Thank you so much Mimi 🙂 x

  23. This looks so flavorful. The vinegar and the oil look like they’d add so much. I’ll have to try this.

    1. Thank you very much Amanda 🙂 You must let me know how it turns out if you try it 😀

  24. The flavour of this dish, with those particular spices, sounds amazing Linda! I imagine it could also make a lovely side dish to some roast lamb!? Hope you had a wonderful weekend!

    1. Margot, this dish is always served during summer time (in this season aubergines are so beautiful), hot or cold as a tapas. I like it cold. Simple to prepare and extremely flavorful. Enjoy the rest of the week! 🙂

  25. This looks fabulous Linda ! I have an eggplant sitting in my refrigerator , I think I know what I have to do with it 🙂

    1. Thank you very much Freda. Simple to prepare and nice too. I hope you will like the recipe! 🙂

  26. I love eggplant and this looks a nice way to enjoy them.

    1. Thank you so much Caroline! 🙂

  27. Loretta says:

    Linda, love this recipe, I just have so many eggplants from the garden and I keep tucking away all these beautiful recipes that I come across. Yours will definitely be tried.

    1. Thanks a lot, Loretta. Trust me, this is a very nice and simple recipe with eggplants. Do let me know how it turns out. Have a nice week! 🙂

  28. Sara I Saqib says:

    Cant believe such an easy recipe could yeld such beautiful results. As always you have me in awe. Im the biggest fan of aubergines and I am really cravings this now >< hehe

    1. Thanks a lot for your nice words, Sara. This recipe is so easy and very tasty. Have a nice weekend! 🙂

  29. burntbutterbakery says:

    Yum! Eggplant is one of my favourite vegetables, my mum had to kick me out of the kitchen whenever she fried off eggplant when I was little as whenever she turned her back I’d be scoffing it!

    1. I’m a huge fan of Eggplant…I always have eggplants into my refrigerator. I did the same when I was young too 😀 Good memories!

  30. Patty Nguyen says:

    These look deliciously savory and full of flavor!

    1. I’m glad you like this recipe, Patty. Simple and good! 🙂

  31. polianthus says:

    one of my favourite vegetables and I am always looking for new ways to enjoy it, cant wait to try it!

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