Easy Ajvar In Your Thermomix®

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Ajvar, a smoky roasted red pepper and eggplant spread, is a staple condiment across the Balkans. It’s incredibly versatile, enjoyed on everything from bread and crackers to grilled meats and stews. The beauty of Thermomix allows you to create this delicious dip with minimal effort, achieving that smoky depth of flavor perfectly. This recipe yields a wonderful balance between sweet and savory, making it a crowd-pleaser.

Ingredients:

Ajvar aus dem Thermomix® • will-mixen
Ajvar aus dem Thermomix® • will-mixen

3 kg red bell peppers, washed and halved (seeds and membranes removed)

  • 1 kg eggplant, peeled and cubed
  • 250 ml sunflower oil
  • 100 ml white vinegar
  • 100 g granulated sugar
  • 2 tbsp sweet paprika
  • 1 tbsp hot paprika (adjust according to your spice preference)
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper

  • Instructions:

    1. Preheating: Begin by preheating your Thermomix to 200°C (392°F).

    2. Roasting the Peppers: Place the halved red bell peppers skin-side down onto the Thermomix Varoma tray. Secure the Varoma lid and set it aside.

    3. Cooking the Eggplant: Add the cubed eggplant to the Thermomix mixing bowl. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon of sunflower oil, and cook for 5 minutes at Varoma temperature, Speed 1, with the Reverse function enabled (to prevent the eggplant from sticking).

    4. Blending the Eggplant: After 5 minutes, scrape down the sides of the mixing bowl with the spatula. Set the Thermomix to Speed 8 for 10 seconds to roughly chop the softened eggplant.

    5. Transferring the Eggplant: Transfer the chopped eggplant to a separate bowl and set aside.

    6. Roasting the Peppers: Place the Varoma tray containing the red bell peppers back onto the Thermomix. Set the machine to 200°C (392°F), Speed 1, for 20 minutes.

    7. Checking the Peppers: After 20 minutes, carefully remove the Varoma lid and check the peppers. They should be softened and slightly blistered. If needed, return the Varoma tray for an additional 5-10 minutes to achieve the desired level of roasting.

    8. Peeling the Peppers: Once roasted, carefully transfer the hot peppers to a heatproof bowl or plastic bag. Cover the bowl or seal the bag tightly. Letting the peppers steam for 10-15 minutes will loosen the skins significantly.

    9. Peeling and Seeding: After steaming, peel the skins off the peppers. The skins should come off easily with your fingers. Discard the skins and any remaining seeds or membranes.

    10. Combining Ingredients: Add the peeled and chopped peppers, cooked eggplant, remaining sunflower oil, vinegar, sugar, paprika (both sweet and hot), salt, and black pepper to the Thermomix mixing bowl.

    11. Blending the Ajvar: Set the Thermomix to Speed 8 for 30 seconds to achieve a smooth consistency. Scrape down the sides of the mixing bowl as needed for even blending.

    12. Simmering the Ajvar: Increase the Thermomix temperature to 100°C (212°F) and set the Speed to 1, with the Reverse function enabled, for 30 minutes. This simmering step helps to thicken the ajvar and allows the flavors to meld beautifully.

    13. Sterilizing Jars: While the ajvar simmers, prepare your storage jars. Wash and sterilize your jars and lids by boiling them for 10 minutes. Remove them from the water with tongs and allow them to air dry on a clean kitchen towel.

    14. Final Blending: After 30 minutes of simmering, adjust the consistency of your ajvar as desired. For a smoother spread, blend for an additional 10-20 seconds at Speed 8.

    15. Filling the Jars: Carefully ladle the hot ajvar into your sterilized jars, leaving about 1/2 inch of headspace at the top.

    16. Sealing the Jars: Wipe the rims of the jars clean with a damp cloth. Secure the lids tightly onto the jars.

    17. Cooling and Storing: Allow the ajvar jars to cool completely at room temperature before storing them in a cool, dark place. Refrigerated, your homemade Thermomix ajvar will keep for up to 3 months.