The Happy Home Cook: Ensaladang Talong (Eggplant Salad) with Coconut Vinaigrette

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Ensaladang Talong (Source:  Kulinarya: A Guidebook to Philippine Cuisine, Expanded Second Edition)

Ensaladang Talong (Source: Kulinarya: A Guidebook to Philippine Cuisine, Expanded Second Edition)

The traditional way of preparing eggplant salad is to broil or roast the eggplant, peel it, mash or slice it into pieces, and dress it with Filipino vinaigrette.

Serves 6


1 onion (80g)
2 salad tomatoes (200 g)
1 small red bell pepper
1 small green bell pepper
2 spring onions (20g)
1 green finger chili (siling pangsigang)
6 eggplants (900g; approximately 150g/pc)
1 tsp salt (5g)
½ tsp ground black pepper (2g)


  1. Peel and slice onion into thin rings. Divide into 4 portions.

  2. Slice tomatoes crosswise into thin rings. Divide into 4 portions.

  3. Cut the red and green bell peppers. Discard the inside membranes and seeds. Cut into ¼-inch cubes. Divide into 4 portions.

  4. Chop the spring onions.

  5. Slice the green finger chili. Discard the inside membrane and seeds. Cut crosswise into thin pieces.


  1. Roast the eggplants directly over a flame until charred. Allow to cool. Peel the eggplants and discard the stems. Flatten with a fork.

  2. Season with salt and pepper.


  1. Lay one flattened eggplant on a chopping board. Cut with a 3-inch round cookie cutter.

  2. Top with 1 portion of the onion rings and the tomatoes.

  3. Sprinkle 1 portion of the chopped red and green bell peppers.

  4. Top with another round eggplant piece. Repeat procedure with every level of eggplant.

  5. Finish the layers with an eggplant.

  6. Carefully arrange the portions on individual plates. Drizzle with coconut vinaigrette*. Garnish with the remaining portions of the red and green bell peppers, spring onions and green finger chili. Serve immediately or keep refrigerated until served.

Tip: Roast eggplants over an open flame or in the oven. Place the charred eggplant inside a paper bag for 10 minutes. All types of roasted vegetables are easier to peel after following this procedure.

Coconut Vinaigrette

½ cup coconut cream (120 ml)
1 cm slice of ginger (2 g)
1 green finger chili
3 tbsp cane vinegar (45 ml)
Salt and pepper to taste


  1. If using mature coconut, extract coconut cream. [Ed note: If you don’t have access to fresh coconut, use canned coconut cream or milk.]

  2. Peel ginger and mince.

  3. Slice green finger chili, seed and devein, and chop.


  1. Combine coconut cream, ginger, green finger chili, and vinegar in a bowl. Stir well.

  2. Season with salt and pepper. Stir well. Taste and adjust seasoning. Stir again.

Reprinted from Kulinarya: A Guidebook to Philippine Cuisine, Expanded Second Edition.