Aubergines are quickly becoming a house hold name. Their new-found status as part of the super food group has this purple delight being used in a number of new ways. Reuben Riffel, the creator of the cookbook Braai, started playing with the idea of an aubergine burger. Removing the bread from a burger is quite a risky step, but the smokey flavour added to the aubergine while on the braai takes this unique and delicious burger to a whole new level. Not to mention the health benefits of removing bread from the traditional burger.  This burger on aubergine “bun” with BBQ sauce is a must-try summer treat.


2 good quality patties

4 bacon rashers

100g mozzarella, sliced

4 x 1.5cm-thick aubergine, sliced the same width as the patties

1 medium onion, sliced

1 medium tomato, sliced

2 gherkins, sliced

1/2t sesame seeds

Smoked BBQ sauce

5 large tomatoes

4 garlic cloves

1 red onion

1 red chilli

500ml tomato sauce

2T brown sugar

1t smoked paprika

20ml molasses

200ml orange juice

150ml brandy

Smoked BBQ sauce

1. Braai the tomatoes, garlic, onion and chilli for about seven minutes in a Cadac. Place in a pot along with the rest of the ingredients and cook over a low heat for 15 minutes. Blend.


1. On a grid over a medium-high heat, cook the patties evenly for about three minutes on each side.

2. Grill the bacon on the grid until evenly crisped.

3. Place the mozzarela on the patty and cover the Cadac to melt the cheese.

4. Grill the aubergine until soft with grill marks.

5. Layer the patty between two slices of aubergine with onion, tomato, bacon, gherkin and a dollop of BBQ sauce. Sprinkle with sesame seeds.

Best served with a Boston Breweries Larger or an Idiom Cape Blend Wine.

Serves 2