Well-cooked aubergines melt sweetly in the mouth in much the same way as really good chocolate; they are incredibly sensual vegetables. Many of us are put off them when they are badly prepared and either not cooked or bitter. The Middle Eastern repertoire understands how to treat them, perhaps better than anyone else does. This is one of my all-time favourite childhood treats, though at that time the chocolate was just a twinkle in my eye. This is the sort of recipe where the quantities need not be too precise, rather trust your taste buds and adjust the flavours as you see fit.