I have a thing for eggplants. First of all, they are delicious. They’re such a beautiful, deep dark purple (or white, or green) and an otherworldly shape. They make a nice, satisfying thunk when you pat them. With their super shiny skin and crazy shapes, I’m always impressed when I see a mature fruit, hanging off its plant.
But despite my efforts, I’ve never been able to successfully grow an eggplant, ever. In fact, they seem impossible to grow. How does something that appears to look so manufactured, more like part vegetable, part new car, actually grow? Evidently they need a ton of sunlight, and pretty consistent warm temperatures, to get a good yield. At this point in my life, and in my gardening career, I prefer to think of them as just magical.
Eggplant slices can be fabulous on the grill, stuffed, or roasted in cubes and then tossed in olive oil, lemon juice, garlic and parsley for an impromptu eggplant salad you can stuff in a flatbread, or pick up with some baked flatbread chips. After we’re finished grilling dinner, I’ll often wrap a couple big boys in foil and throw them in the cooler grill to slow roast, pulling them out before bed so I can make baba ghanoush the next day.
My favorite: smoky, silky purée of eggplant, baba ghanoush, is also easy to make, if you have a little extra time and some big gorgeous eggplants. If your grocery your favorite ready made, then by all means use theirs. This flatbread recipe has a lot going on, and it all works perfectly to make a very satisfying, vegetable packed lunch you’ll return to, again and again.
-Amy at Flatout