I've spoken about aubergines here and here so I'm not going to keep ranting about the benefits of eating it. Instead I'm focusing on Cayenne. This wonderfully punchy spice is made from the dried and ground pods although like most general store bought spices it's usually blended with a cheaper spice so it goes further. I would totally recommend you to find a great spice dealer and stick with them. You will notice a massive difference in quality. Cayenne from Sierra Leone in Africa is said to be the most pungent and medicinal, it's said to be the purest stimulant producing natural warmth and great for circulation. Also knows as a great remedy for colds, coughs but do be careful. This is one serious spice.
Lemon. Another native of Norther India, this fruit comes in many forms. Big, small, sweet and sour. It's so versatile that it is constantly in my house. Gin and tonics, desserts, a cleaner and for savoury dishes, it's an all rounder!
Used as a disinfectant for sore throats as well as cuts and abrasions this has some serious natural healing qualities. In the third century AD the Romans believed that they were an antidote for all poisons. Along with other citruses they act as a solvents in the body which stimulate the liver and gallbladder which mobilise any inactive acids or toxic settlements.
2 or 3 medium size aubergine
pinch of cayenne
juice of 1 ½ lemons
1 tbsp of honey/maple syrup
little slug of olive oil
Preheat oven to 200C. Cut aubergines into rings about 1 inch in width. Mix the cayenne, lemon juice, honey/maple syrup and olive oil in a little jug. Taste and see if you prefer it sweeter (the initial taste should be of sweetness followed by a kick of cayenne taken away by the acidity of the lemon). Lay the rings in a tray as flat as you can. Brush both sides with the mix and pop into the oven for about 15-20mins. Turn over half way through. They should get a great caramelised look to them and be soft.
This works great with rich meat like lamb or duck and don't forget that aubergine reduces in size considerably!