Provencal Eggplant Caviar
A good eggplant for this recipe would be a large, one-pound eggplant, but you could use two smaller ones if you just can't seem to find a large one-pound eggplant. It happens. This is a relatively quick and easy recipe, but the real time comes from the waiting for it to cool in the fridge. Giving it enough time in the fridge will ensure all the flavors get distributed equally and they blend nicely. Patience is a virtue and luckily it is easy for us to leave recipes like this in the fridge overnight, since we all exit the building for the night. You might not be so lucky, and the temptation may be extremely strong. Resist, it’ll taste so much better in the morning. Plus, then you can reward yourself with a few extra bites for your amazing self-control.
Don’t forget to roast the eggplant and garlic in this recipe. It gives the whole thing a deeper, more dimensional flavor that makes this dish absolutely to die for. Go the extra mile and serve it with homemade pita chips, you absolutely will not be disappointed. Jeff did this and the chips were fantastic. Don’t be fooled by looks! It might not be a beauty queen food, but where it lacks in looks, it absolutely knocks flavor out of the park. Eggplant caviar is just as unique tasting as the name would lead you to believe, and our taste testers were digging in for multiple scoops with those yummy chips. If you don’t have homemade pita on hand, you can use store bought as well. Alternatively, carrots, celery, or any other crunchy vegetable really will be just fine. Jeff likes this with baguette rounds as well.
- Preheat oven to 400 F.
- Prick some holes all over the eggplant. Apply a light coat of olive oil to the eggplant, onion, and garlic. Place them on an ungreased baking sheet and roast for 40-50 minutes. Turn eggplant frequently with tongs.
- After the eggplant, onion, and garlic have cooled, remove the stem from the eggplant. Cut in half lengthwise and drain on a towel cut side down. Remove skin from eggplant. Remove skin from onion and squeeze the roasted garlic into a food processor. Cut eggplant and onion into smaller pieces and add to the food processor.
- Add the olive oil, lemon juice, tomato paste, vinegar, and Mediterranean Dry Rub into the food processor with the eggplant, onion, and garlic and process until smooth. Season with salt and pepper if necessary.
- Place mixture into a serving bowl and let rest in refrigerator for at least 2 hours.
- Serve with Pita chips, toasted baguette rounds or assorted fresh vegetables.