It’s that time of year when eggplants (or aubergines) and tomatoes are in abundance. Ratatouille and its variations are my “go to” tomato and eggplant recipes but recently I sampled another dish that adds to my repertoire.
Working for a world class international company we get a lot of young interns coming through, they get a nice addition to their CV, as well as the chance to spend some time in one of the world’s great cities. We get a youthful enthusiasm and a fresh perspective on our business. Win-win as they say.
Currently we have a great group (well, all the cohorts are great) in for the summer and among them is a young lady of Turkish decent who introduced me to the following salad. It is simple to prepare, yet complex in flavor and absolutely delicious. And the best part, I have most of the ingredients growing out in the garden!
A key step is roasting the eggplant over coals, until blistered and black on the outside and moist and tender on the inside. If you can’t fire roast the eggplants, use a hot oven as described below.
As with most salads, measurements are approximate. Use what you have and adjust proportions to suit your own taste.
Turkish Eggplant Salad
Eggplant (3-4 Japanese eggplants or 2-3 globe eggplants)
4 large plum tomatoes, chopped
2 cups (500 ml) chopped Parsley – I used a combination of curly and flat leafed
½ cup (125 ml) chopped red onion
2-3 cloves Garlic minced
½ cup (125 ml) extra virgin olive oil
¼ cup (60 ml) fresh lemon juice
Salt and pepper to taste
- Prepare coals – I used hardwood charcoal instead of the mass produced briquettes. If using oven see Note below
- Cut a slit in the eggplants
- Place eggplant over hot coals roast, turning occasionally until skin is blackened and flesh inside is very soft
- While eggplants roast, prepare the other vegetables, chop the onions, parsley and tomatoes, mince the garlic and place into large bowl
- When eggplant are done remove to sheet pan or bowl to cool
- When eggplant are cool enough to handle, peel the skins off, scraping the tender flesh from the skins if you need to with a spoon. Discard skins.
- Chop roasted eggplant flesh and add to other ingredients
- Add olive oil and lemon juice. Toss together, and check seasonings
- Add salt and pepper to taste
So for a summer salad that’s a little different, give this fire-roasted eggplant salad a try!
If using an oven – preheat to 450 F (230 C or Gas Mark 8), put eggplant on a roasting pan and roast until soft and tender.
Until next time – Eat Well & Keep Digging