Creative eggplant dishes for eggplant maniac
The maniac is me. I LOVE those things. I've broiled, baked, stuffed, sauteed, roasted, stir-fried and more. I've had chinese, japanese, yellow, white, green, european and more.
I need new recipies! Gimme some ides for dishes in which eggplant is the main ingredient and really yummy!
I love Imam Bidalyi - I make a Greek version of the Turkish dish . It has eggplant, tomatoes, currants, onions, with oregano, honey, balsamic, and cinnamon. Basically, you cut and salt the eggplants into rounds, fry until soft. Layer in the bottom of a 9x12 pan. Top with a large can of good quality diced tomatoes, currents, carmelized onions, and add a tsp or so of dry oregano, a dash of cinnamon, drizzle with honey, balsamic, and olive oil and cook at about 350C until hot and bubbly and everything is soft. I love it as a side served with couscous and a white fish or chicken. Yum!
Oh, right! Thanks for reminding me. Eggplant Imam Bayaldi - the eggplant that blissed out the imam. This is a much easier version than the daunting one I made only once, which involved cutting vertical slits in the eggplant and trying to stuff the currant mixture into them (a losing battle).
ROASTED EGGPLANT SOUP
3 tomatoes, halved
1 eggplant, halved lengthwise
1 small onion, halved
6 cloves garlic, peeled
2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
1 Tbsp. fresh thyme, chopped
4 cups chicken broth
1 cup heavy cream
31/2 oz. crumbled goat cheese
salt and pepper, to taste
Preheat oven to 400. Place tomatoes, eggplant, onion, and garlic on a baking sheet and brush with oil.
Roast in preheated oven until very tender and brown in spots, 45 minutes.
Scoop out eggplant pulp and discard skin. Place eggplant pulp, tomatoes, onion, and garlic in a large, heavy saucepan with thyme and chicken broth. Bring to a boil over medium heat, then reduce heat and simmer until onion is very tender, 45 minutes.
Puree in batches using a food processor or an immersion blender. Return to low heat and stir in cream. Bring to a simmer, thinning with more broth, if necessary. Season with salt and pepper. Ladle into bowls and sprinkle with goat cheese.
Makes 5 servings.
It's been ages since I've made an eggplant soup. This recipe sounded both easy and delicious. Plus, I happened to have some leftover eggplant in the fridge that I'd roasted and scooped out to make baba ghanoush. I figured I had just enough for two portions of soup for my husband and me. I roasted a small tomato, some onion and garlic. Also, I cut down on the cream, using just a small amount along with some skim milk. The soup was delicious! So, thanks, Veggo, for sharing this wonderful recipe. :-)
I made a version of this soup last week. I roasted two eggplants with six plum tomatoes cut in half, and some onions (they went in for the last 15 mins or so since I find they shrink fast). As above, I roasted about 45 minutes.
Meanwhile I toasted up some spices -- mustard and cumin seeds, some cinnamom, cardamom I think, and cayenne, in a dry skillet. Mmmm fragrant.
I scooped out the eggplant pulp and tossed it into blender with the tomato and onion and a little bit of water (estimate until you get the consistency you want) and one can of **coconut milk** I did this puree in two batches.
Then I slowly reheated and added in the spice mixture. Absolutely deliciously smoky.
Great link, thanks! Have you tested out some of the recipes? Do they work? Any standouts?
I liked the eggplant dish in last month's cookbook of the month, Hot Sour Salty Sweet, but I know some were underwhelmed by it. Here's my post w/ photos: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/36667...
Most likely you're describing miso-grilled eggplant (nasu dengaku) Mix approx equal parts miso, mirin, sake, and sugar (to taste; I like less sugar), and cook that a little bit until it gets nice and thick (microwave can work, even). Cut small japanese eggplants, roast/grill a bit, then brush paste on top of slices and finish roasting until nice and bubbly. In the northeast US, I've seen a few restaurants make this with big Italian-style eggplants, scored diagonally into little diamonds. Not quite the same, but still rather nice.
Two of my favorite Sicilian dishes are caponata and my version of pasta alla Norma: instead of frying it I cube the eggplant and toss it with olive oil and salt, then roast it in a 450 degree oven. I make a sauce by sauteeing garlic and a little crushed red pepper in olive oil, then I add a 14.5 oz can of diced tomatoes and simmer for about 10 minutes while cooking penne pasta. When it's all cooked, I add the eggplant and some finely sliced basil to the sauce, then add the pasta and top with grated parm or--even better--grated smoked ricotta.
Japanese or Chinese eggplants. Slice 1 1/2". Cook the slices standing on end and covered, in a little oil, a bit lower heat than you think. When they're cooked through and browned on each end, serve hot or cold - plate them standing on end and drizzled with a little thickened sauce made of soy sauce/sugar/garlic.
A little time consuming, but I like to make eggplant "noodles", by taking thin slices of eggplant and dipping in a thin batter and frying them until soft and a bit golden brown. These can then be rolled with a cheese filling (ricotta, mixed with herbs, parmesan, whatever you want), lined up in a casserole, and tomato sauce spooned on top. (I make one with some extra wine, capers, and a little cinnamon for this recipe)
Many west african groundnut stews call for eggplant, though maybe that's a more supporting than central role...
My fav is-
Peel the eggplant and cut into about 1 inch disks. Brush with olive oil and salt/pepper and roast in oven. Once done place on disk on the plate- top with a 1 inch slice of a great tomato- top that with a great fresh mozzarella and top with another eggplant disk. I then drizzle with a great EVOO and julienne of basil...
If serving as an antipasti course I usually do 2 stacks per person.... everyone loves it.
Pinjur (also spelled Pindzur) is a traditional Macedonian dish that is simple, healthy, and delicious. I always get rave reviews when I make it.
Roast one medium-large eggplant in oven on high heat (400-450) until it chars and collapses. (If you can char it over an open flame, even better. The most flavour is when you char it over wood, it gives it a smoky taste that is out of this world.)
Mash 2-3 cloves of garlic with a splash of olive oil and salt in mortar and pestle. (Can add more or less garlic and OO to taste.)
Scoop out eggplant, mix will garlic paste until thoroughly incoporated.
You can add a handful of chopped parsley or cilantro for a little color and extra flavor, and also a handful of coarsely chopped walnuts for texture. Serve with any bread you like.
Those who like it hot will roast a hot pepper, shred it, and mix it in with the eggplant.
Make baba ghanoush! If you've got a blender, it's about the easiest thing in the world . . .
Roast two eggplants at 375 for about 45 minutes, or until they're looking a little wilted and brown instead of purple.
Put them in a bowl with saran wrap over the top and let them cool to room temperature.
Peel the skin off the eggplants with your fingers, then put the flesh in the blender.
a big handful of parsley
1/4 C of tahini
1/4 C lemon juice
2 cloves garlic
1/2 tsp. salt
And whir the whole thing up until it's a creamy consistency and the garlic has been blended in. You can use more tahini if you want, or add a little liquid smoke if that's your thing, or roast the garlic first, or add some cumin . . . Enjoy!
I make baba ghanoush all the time and never use a blender. Since the eggplant is very soft, it mashes quite easily with a fork. Then I stir together the tahini and lemon juice with a little water, and crush the garlic clove in a press. I add these to the eggplant and incorporate them well with a spoon. The texture may be a bit coarser than what comes out of a blender or food processor, but the taste is still excellent.
I do this without the blender too. For a cool twist, add in some toasted sesame oil (maybe 1 Tbsp) and some fresh chopped ginger, for a great Asian dipping sauce. Swirl in some yogurt if you like it lusciously creamy, as I do. :) This is really unusual and delicious. I love it with crudites or as a spread for a veggie wrap, like an Asian slaw.
Thought of another great one: Fried eggplant slices topped with herbed goat cheese and spicy tomato jam. To make the jam you cook down peeled and seeded tomatos with sugar, a little vinegar, and some hot peppers. The sweet spicy jam combines with the creamy goat cheese and crisp eggplant really well.
A favorite from the Time -Life Good Cook series: Eggplant Gratin. YOu basically saute slices of eggplant and lay them in a gratin dish, sprinkling each layer with a mixture of salt, white papper and allspice (the allspice is key). Then you make a gratin with ricotta cheese, fresh basil, egg, parm, salt and pepper, cream, spread it over and sprinkle with more parm before baking. A variation of eggplant parm, but the allspice gives it a hauntingly good flavor.
There's a great Lebanese dish made casserole style. It's slices of eggplant layered with ground lamb, tomato sauce, allspice, pine nuts, garlic, etc. It's called shikh il mihshee- bantinjan bil saneeyee. That's a mouthful for "GREAT EGGPLANT DISH." Let me know if you want a more specific recipe.
Sounds like you are the one who should be sharing the eggplant recipes. Why don't you post a few good ones?
I don't make too many things with it but I love Roasted eggplant and red bell pepper soup, and I like fried eggplant on pasta with tomato sauce and feta cheese or rocotta salata on top. And of course eggplant and yogurt spread/dip. Moussaka too. That's all I ever make, so I'll like to hear a couple that you think should be in anyone's rotation.
I make a Georgian recipe, I think not totally authentic but totally delish!
slice the eggplant lengthwise, and salt to get bitter juices out.
Mix mayo, fresh cilantro, and tons of fresh garlic together.
Fry the slices til they are flexible.
Cool, spread with this paste, fold up (I just put both sides in to the middle) and refrigerate. Eat it cold. MMMMMmmmmmm.
One of my favorites is from Hiroko Shimbo's cookbook, and though it sounds unusual, it is really GOOD! Eggplant salad with scrambled eggs. She recommends steaming the eggplant, but I usually grill or broil it, because I like the smoky flavor along with the salty/sweet dressing. I know it sounds odd, but give it a try.
I love eggplant rollatini, but I use a ricotta filling that is a wee bit different, not wildly so. I roast slices of eggplant brushed with olive oil, salt & pepper, until they are caramelized and pliable (don't slice the eggplant too thinly, you need a little substance). Cool the slices and fill with a ricotta mixture (ricotta, parmesan, garlic, an egg and a good handful or more of fresh basil and a very little freshly grated nutmeg, whiz it in a food processor until the ricotta takes on a slightly green color, but is mostly just flecked with basil). Roll up the eggplant and ricotta slices and place in a baking dish. Cover with your favorite tomato sauce, I usually make a quick and spicy one of my own, and top with a sprinkling of whatever cheese takes your fancy: ricotta salata, parmesan, pecorino, mozarella, etc.
An aside: I really liked someone's use of currants and cinnamon for adding a Turkish influence to the flavor of eggplant, and next time maybe I'll try changing my ricotta filling to incorporate these ideas (maybe no basil, though). Maybe add some feta to the filling, and to top the eggplant rolls.
I do a rollatini very similar to the first suggestion (ricotta, parm, basil, egg, garlic) but I sometimes lay a thin slice of proscuitto or speck onto the eggplant before adding the filling and rolling. Sometimes spinach. If spinach, I add a pinch of nutmeg to the mix.
For the "sauce" I take a batch of cherry tomatoes, slice in half, toss them with olive oil, garlic, and mound atop the rollatini, and let it all cook together, rather than making a sauce beforehand.
This is my version of a recipe I found on Hungry Monster. It's an Indian raita---usually served more as a side dish with a meat or vegetable curry, but it makes an excellent "small meal" when served with hot Basmati (or long-grain) rice or naan:
Baingan Ka Rayta (yoghurt With Baked Spiced Eggplant)
1 medium-size eggplant -- (1 pound)
2 teaspoons vegetable oil
1/4 cup onions -- finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon garam masala*
1 small, firm, ripe tomato, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup fresh cilantro-- finely chopped
1 cup unflavored yoghurt
Preheat the oven to 400 . With the point of a sharp knife, make 5 or 6 inch deep evenly spaced slits in the eggplant and place it in a shallow baking dish. Roast the eggplant in the middle of the oven for 45 minutes, or until it is soft to the touch. Watch carefully for any signs of burning and regulate the heat accordingly. Remove the eggplant from the oven and when it is cool enough to handle, peel it and chop the pulp coarsely. Meanwhile, in a heavy 8- to 10-inch skillet, heat the vegetable oil over moderate heat until a light haze forms above it. Add the onions and salt and, stirring constantly, cook for 7 or 8 minutes, or until they are soft and golden brown. Watch carefully for any signs of burning, and regulate the heat accordingly. Add the garam marala, tomato and coriander, and stir for 1 minute. Still stirring, add the eggplant, and cook for 2 or 3 minutes longer. Place the yoghurt in a small bowl, add the entire contents of the skillet, and gently but thoroughly toss the ingredients together. Taste for seasoning, cover tightly, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, or until completely chilled.
*To make your own garam masala:
3/4 tsp. ground cumin
3/4 tsp. ground coriander
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
1/2 tsp. ground cardamom
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
(Makes 1 Tablespoon)
One of the only dishes my mother ever made for my father from his mother's repetoire was a Romanian chopped eggplant salad he called "putlagella". I don't know if that's the real name or one of the wonderful nonesense words he was fond of using. It's always been a favorite of mine. Since I don't like green pepper, I've changed the original recipe to fit my taste with orange or yellow sweet bell pepper. Hope you like it.
(Romanian Eggplant Salad)
1 1lb eggplant roasted til soft (about an hour at 400)
1 small onion
1 carrot, peeled
1 half orange or yellow sweet pepper
1 hard boiled egg
1 T. mayonnaise or olive oil
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
salt and pepper to taste
Scoop the flesh from the eggplant skin. Force it through a wire grater over a medium sized bowl. Grate the rest of the vegetables and the egg into the bowl. Add the remaining ingredients and mix. Refrigerate for several hours. Serve as a salad or on crackers or pita triangles as an appetizer.
Another eggplant freak here... I make a vegetable curry with coconut milk, and always try to include browned Chinese eggplant (diced or sliced). The creaminess of the eggplant is a really nice element.
There's also an easy Chinese eggplant dish I love (definitely using either Chinese or Japanese eggplants)... if you want to, you can include ground or julienned pork. But I find it's just as good w/o the meat if you want something light.
Cut each eggplant into batons or slice into coins, sautee till brown on all sides and tender inside, then add mix of chicken broth, hoisin sauce, salt and pepper and cornstarch (to thicken into yummy sauce), simmer until sauce thickens (if too thick, just add more broth). Serve over rice, drizzle with sesame sauce and sprinkle chopped cilantro and green onions on top.
I made a slightly modified version of Madhur Jaffrey's Sweet and Sour Eggplant last night for dinner and it was delicious. You broil about two cookie sheets worth of 1/3" eggplant slices with olive oil, salt and pepper, turning over and broiling on both sides.
Then, line a gratin dish with eggplant slices, and over each layer, spoon:
3 T lemon juice or white rice vinegar
2 T sugar
1 T chopped fresh mint
2 tsp. cumin
pinch of red pepper flakes
And bake at 350 for 20 minutes. So good! I imagine this type of marinade could be used on just about any roasted vegetables -- I dipped my steamed artichokes in some of it and that was good too!
I do not have any recipe to share but wanted to say this is the best thread ever! Eggplant is my favorite thing in the world and SO's least favorite... I could eat it everyday. I never cook with it at home. Only order it when we eat out and it's usually Parmesan or with pasta. I usually have baba ganoush on hand from the Lebanese market down the street. I am so enjoying imagining all of these fine recipes.
Sadly I don't have this recipe, but we had Chinese take-out eggplant pork hot pot. It was so good I ate the leftovers standing half in the fridge. It was fairly spicey/garlicky/gingery and had bamboo shoots for a little crunch.
I's love to make it, hey, it might even work in a slow cooker???
They're great on the grill. Cut them in half lengthwise. Crosshatch the flesh in a diamond pattern as deeply as you can without cutting through the skin. Marinate with a good oil and vinegar dressing while you get the charcoal going. Face down to get some good grill marks and then flip them skin side down and move them to the side of the grill to finish cooking. You can baste with additional dressing if you like but it's usually not necessary. Good hot or at room temperature.
One half per person so buy the eggplants with that size serving in mind. Lots of small ones are great, too, if you have the grill space. Half zucchinis and crookneck squash work great like this too. Leftovers make a terrific salad or ratatouille.
Eggplant is also one of my favorites... I love to hear someone say "I hate eggplant!" It then becomes a challenge to convert them to the good side ;)
Here is a simple one for Baked Eggplant:
2 tablespoons garlic cloves – cut in thin, julienne strips
1 1/2 tablespoon lemon juice
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon fresh thyme
1/2 teaspoon (or to taste) coarse kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon (or to taste) freshly cracked black pepper
1 large eggplant
1 cup frozen chopped spinach
1/3 cup crumbled feta
3 tablespoons pine nuts – freshly toasted
Preheat oven to 375 F.
Whisk lemon juice and olive oil until it emulsified. Add thyme, salt, pepper and garlic. (If you can do this step a couple of hours, or even the night before using it will have a better flavor.)
Split the eggplant lengthwise into two halves. Using a chopstick, make holes in the cut side of the eggplant and insert a piece of garlic and some of the marinade into each hole.
Salt the spinach and microwave it for three minutes on high. Squeeze out some of the excess liquid.*
Mix the feta and pine nuts into the spinach and spread an even coat over the top of each eggplant half. Drizzle the top with any remaining marinade.
Bake for about an hour.
NOTE: I sometimes sauté a little onion in olive oil and add it to the spinach.
My favorite eggplant preparation comes from Paula Wolfert's book on Mediterranean cooking. Basically, it's a twice-cooked eggplant - same idea as refried beans. Saute eggplant slices in olive oil until golden brown (keep strips of skin on so they don't fall apart). Mash up the slices with garlic and lots of paprika and fry again until moisture evaporates. Drain the mash to get rid of excess oil. This stuff is truly delicious. Good for sandwiches also.
Here's my recipe for stuffed eggplant. It's quite good!
1 medium-sized eggplant (about 7" long and 5" in diameter)
1/4 C. extra virgin olive oil
1 small yellow onion, diced
1/4 tsp. kosher salt
1 small (4 oz) zucchini, diced
1 medium yellow pepper, diced
1 C. cooked short-grain brown rice
2 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
1 Tbsp. Italian Herb Garlic Gold Nuggets
1 small (1 oz) slice whole wheat sourdough bread, processed into breadcrumbs
1 oz (1/4 C.) grated parmesan cheese
1. Halve the eggplant, then scoop out the insides with a melon baller or tablespoon, leaving 1/4" of flesh. Place hollowed out halves in a 9" square baking dish and set aside.
2. Coarsely chop the eggplant flesh.
3. In a large (12") non-stick skillet, heat the olive oil over medium flame. Add the onions, and cook until translucent and softened.
4. Add the eggplant and salt to the skillet, cooking until eggplant softens and is no longer opaque.
5. Add the zucchini and diced pepper to the skillet, cooking until softened.
6. Transfer sauteed vegetables to a medium mixing bowl, then add the brown rice, vinegar, and Garlic Gold nuggets. Stir until everything is combined.
7. Preheat oven to 400F.
8. In a small bowl, mix the sourdough breadcrumbs and parmesan cheese together.
9. Scoop the vegetable mixture into the eggplant halves, then top them with the breadcrumbs and cheese, patting it down to form an even crust. Bake for 25 minutes.