Marinated Eggplant

October 11, 2011

Eggplant

This year we had an abundance of eggplants sprouting from our gardens. We’ve been making a few different dishes, but I wanted to try something new. Today I experimented and the result was fantastic. Luckily I snapped a few photos to go along with the recipe. Here goes…

2 Eggplants
Handful of fresh oregano, basil, fennel
2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
1/4 C olive oil
1/2 lemon
3 C spinach
3 Cloves garlic
1/2 onion
12 assorted mushrooms (Shiitake, Button, Portabella, etc…)
Marinara sauce

Start with two small eggplants sliced in half lengthwise. Use a knife to carve out a tiny basin in each half. Here’s how they should look after they have been notched and placed into a container:

Notched and ready to be salted

Salt the eggplants thoroughly and leave them covered for 3 hours. This will draw the moisture from the eggplant and remove any bitterness. After the salt has done its work, drain the water and rinse the eggplants in fresh water. Gently squeeze the eggplants without crushing them.

Place the eggplants back into the container and douse them with olive oil and apple cider vinegar. These should pool in the little basins that were notched out earlier.

Chop the herbs and garlic very finely and sprinkle liberally over top of the eggplant, again piling directly onto the basin. Use a heaping pile of herbs – they will be removed and used again later. Drizzle with the juice from half of a lemon, and perhaps a splash of wine. Here’s what it will look like at this point:

Covered in herbs and garlic

Cover the container and allow to marinate for at least 2 hours (the longer, the better). Once marinated, roast in the oven for an hour while covered with tin foil.

Saute the onion and mushrooms until the onions are carmelized and the mushrooms begin to brown. Remove the eggplants from the oven. Remove the excess piles of herbs from the marinade and mix with the onions and mushrooms. Toss all of the spinach on top and mix together. Use a ton of spinach. It reduces significantly and tastes great with the eggplant. Here’s what it looks like when it first goes on:

Spinach

The same amount of spinach reduced:

Once the spinach has reduced, take the eggplants and add them to the mix. After heating together with the rest of the vegetables, remove the eggplants and pile the vegetables on top.

This is delicious on its own, but is fully completed with a bit of marinara sauce and some romano cheese.

Ready to eat!With cheese...

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