California Central Coast Recipes
Grilled Eggplant with Fresh Oregano.
Grilled Eggplant with Fresh Oregano has a kind of sweet earthy taste that accompanies grilled meats like beef and pork very well. Eggplant takes to grilling very well, but most cooks slice it too thickly which leaves a kind of "green-uncooked" taste to the center with a burned outside coating. To get the best of this versatile vegetable, you really have to slice the eggplant into thin slices and grill quickly over high heat.
Grilled Eggplant can be served warm or cold. We particularly like to serve it cold with Caponata
, Roasted Peppers Italian Style
and Grilled Zucchini Ribbons with Mint
as part of a Summer antipasto. The eggplant is a nice counter point to the grilled zucchini.
Preparation time: Cooking time:
2 medium Eggplants
3 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/4 cup Fresh Oregano coarsely chopped
1 Preheat your grill to high heat
2 Using a mandoline or a sharp knife, slice the eggplant into thin slices, about 1/4 inch thick, lengthwise. It is not necessary to peal the eggplant.
3 Very lightly brush the top side of each eggplant slice with the olive oil, then lightly salt and pepper the the top also . As you finish each slice, stack them on top of each other. You do not want the slice soggy with olive oil, --it is only necessary to coat the top. There will be enough olive oil, salt and pepper transferred to coat the bottom of each slice as you stack them.
4 Place the slices on the grill and grill each side until lightly browned, about 2 minutes per side.
5 When finished grilling, if you are serving immediately, place the grilled slices on a platter and sprinkle the chopped oregano on top. Drizzle a bit of extra virgin olive on top, and serve.
6 If you are serving chilled, place the slices in a covered bowl and refrigerate until ready to serve. Prepare for serving as above.
Grilled eggplant and oregano pair very well with a nice simple red wine like a Sangiovese or even Malbec. It is equally at home with a white like a Chardonnay or Viognier.