Monday, March 28, 2011

Eggplant Slices with Pomegranate, Yogurt and Tahini

This is superb. I've served this for Thanksgiving, believe it or not, along with everything else. I consider this a vegetable side dish but you might think of it as a salad. It doesn't matter. Just enjoy.

2 globe eggplants, or as many eggplants as it takes to make about 2½ pounds
Olive oil
1½ tablespoon pomegranate molasses
1½ tablespoon red or white wine vinegar
2 cups plain whole-milk yogurt, drained if it is very soupy, see instructions
1 garlic clove, crushed
2 tablespoons tahini
¼ cup pine nuts
¼ cup pomegranate seeds

1. Cut the eggplant in half lengthwise and then crosswise into 5/8-inch slices. Place them on an oiled sheet of foil on a rimmed baking sheet. Brush both sides of the eggplant with oil and sprinkle lightly with salt.
2. Place in a very hot 475ºF oven for about 30-40 minutes, until they are soft and browned, turning the slices once mid-way through cooking.
3. Mix together the pomegranate molasses, vinegar, and 2 tablespoon olive oil. Brush the eggplant slices with the dressing and arrange them on a large platter. You may have some dressing left over; use your discretion as to the amount the eggplant can absorb.
4. Whisk the yogurt with the garlic and tahini and pour over the slices. Fry the pine nuts very briefly in ½ tablespoon of olive oil or toast them in your toaster oven, watching them carefully, until they are light brown. Sprinkle the pine nuts and the pomegranate seeds over the yogurt. Serve at room temperature.

4 servings as a side dish
Adapted from Claudia Roden’s Arabesque: A Taste of Morocco, Turkey and Lebanon

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