Roasted Eggplant Salad

Roasted Eggplant Salad

 

My daughter Amanda decided she was going to start a mini-farm this year.  Mind you, she has never grown a vegetable in all her life.  I was really amazed at all the stuff she grew.  Some of the squash looked like they were on steroids.  Unlike the rest of my family I have never had great success growing veggies.  I was in awe at the massive cucumbers, squashes, and eggplants she grew.  Being more than happy to relieve her of some of the load, I gladly used the eggplants (my favorite Rosa Bianca variety) for making my grandmother’s Sicilian eggplant salad.  The eggplant is roasted and marinated in a vinaigrette with tomatoes, capers, basil, oregano, and garlic.  This salad pairs well with grilled or roasted meats.

Mandy squash

Mandy eggplant

ROASTED EGGPLANT SALAD
(Insalata di Milinciana/Insalata di Melanzana)

Difficulty Rating: Easy
Make 6 servings.

2 large eggplants (2 ½ to 3 pounds)
2 large tomatoes, cut in 1/2-inch dice
1/2 cup + 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup white balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup large capers
2 tablespoons minced fresh basil leaves
2 teaspoons dried oregano leaves
1 garlic clove, finely minced
Salt and black pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Remove and discard stem end of eggplant and cut into 1-inch cubes.  Place eggplant on a large baking sheet, toss with 1/2 cup olive oil and spread out in an even layer in pan.  Note: If you don’t have a large enough baking sheet, cook eggplant in 2 batches.  Place oven and bake about 40 minutes, until eggplant is lightly browned and tender when pierced with a fork.  Let cool 20 minutes.

Place eggplant, tomato, capers, basil, and oregano in a serving bowl.  Whisk together 1/4 cup olive oil, vinegar, and garlic in a small bowl.  Toss dressing with eggplant mixture and season with salt and pepper to taste.  Let sit for 30 minutes to 2 hours to allow flavors to develop.

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