We had a fun cooking challenge at our house this Christmas that we dubbed Battle Eggplant in honor of the original Japanese version of Iron Chef. I gave each of my adult children and their partners an eggplant and challenged them to come up with original dishes in one hour, using any ingredients they could find in our kitchen. I wrote recently about the recipe my son and his wife created, Jerusalem Eggplant Surprise.
This spot gives you the recipe for my daughter and her friend Daniel’s winning recipe, an eggplant dip.
Here is her description and the recipe, as best she remembers it. Ingredients were flying out of our spice cabinet fast and furious during that hour, so you may have to experiment a bit to find the exact recipe ingredient amounts.
“I was thinking of baba ganoush but, since there was no tahini, we made a different sort of eggplant dip. Less creamy, same overall idea,” she writes.
Jenny and Daniel’s Eggplant Dip
Garam masala (she wasn’t absolutely certain on this, but we do have it in our spice collection so it likely was used)
Dice onion into a small dice.
Heat skillet over medium heat and dry saute onion until just beginning to brown.
Add oil to pan and continue cooking onion until caramelized.
Set aside. (You can let these cook for most of the time while preparing the eggplant, just don’t let it burn).
Slice eggplant into half-inch rounds.
Sprinkle both sides with salt and set in colander in the sink to sweat out some of the moisture – for 10 minutes.
Rinse eggplant slices and pat dry with a towel.
Place eggplant on a baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil.
Sprinkle salt and pepper over the slices.
Flip eggplant and repeat same steps on other side.
Turn oven to broil and place on top shelf. Broil for 5 – 10 minutes, flipping half way through.
Remove eggplant from oven and let cool.
Peel off skin and place in a medium-sized bowl. Add caramelized onions to bowl.
Mash together with a fork or your hands.
Add a dash of lemon juice, a sprinkle of lemon zest, and season with cumin, coriander, and garam masala, tasting and adding until it is all nicely balanced.
Heat another skillet over medium heat.
Grill pita bread in pan, heating both sides until toasty.
Slice into triangles and serve with dip.
The resulting dip had a wonderful eggplant flavor to it, it disappeared quickly even before we had started Christmas dinner,