Saturday, January 18, 2020

Garlic Roasted Eggplant with Olive Oil, Balsamic Vinegar, and Basil

Eggplant and olive oil are like two peas in a pod. And when you add garlic, balsamic vinegar and fresh basil on top of that, well they're like four peas in a pod! This recipe combines all of these ingredients together in an easy to prepare and delicious oven-roasted veggie dish. I do not have exact measurements for the olive oil, balsamic and seasonings as that is up to one's own taste. However, skimping on the olive oil is never a good idea when it comes to eggplants because they soak it up like a sponge and will taste like one without it. Also, I use granulated or powdered garlic instead of fresh because sometimes fresh garlic will burn during the roasting process and leave a bitter taste. 

2 large eggplants, cut into large 2" dice
1/2 cup+ olive oil
1/4 cup Balsamic vinegar
1 tsp. granulated garlic or garlic powder
Salt & pepper, to taste
1 cup fresh basil leaves

1. Preheat the oven to 400F. 

2. Place the diced eggplant on a foil-lined baking sheet and pour a generous amount of olive oil over the eggplant and a splash of balsamic vinegar. Season with salt and pepper, then toss the eggplants to combine all the ingredients. 

3. Spread the eggplant out into a single layer on the pan and place in the oven. Let roast for about 45 minutes, turning the pieces over with tongs about halfway through the cooking time. 

4. When the eggplant is tender (check with a fork), remove the pan from the oven. When slightly cooled, taste for seasoning and add more salt, pepper, garlic powder as needed. Tear the basil leaves by hand into smaller pieces and add to the eggplant. Toss to combine while the eggplant is still warm.

This dish can be served warm as a side dish or at room temperature as an appetizer/antipasto.

 Flavored olive oils and vinegars like roasted garlic olive oil and vanilla & fig California balsamic from the Temecula Olive Oil Company here, work well in this recipe.

Toss the diced eggplant with a generous amount of the olive oil, balsamic and seasonings. 

Toss in the torn basil leaves with the warm eggplant before serving. 

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