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Grilled Eggplant with Garlic-Cumin Vinaigrette, Feta & Herbs

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Serves four to six as a side dish.

This dish looks especially nice served on a platter, with the feta and herbs scattered over grilled eggplant

For the vinaigrette:
  • 1 small clove garlic
  • Kosher salt
  • 1-1/2 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
  • 1 small shallot, very finely diced
  • 3 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp. cumin seed, lightly toasted and pounded in a mortar or ground in a spice grinder
  • Pinch cayenne; more to taste
For the eggplant:
  • 1 large globe eggplant (about 1 lb.), trimmed and cut into 1/2-inch-thick rounds
  • 3 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil; more as needed
  • Kosher salt.
  • 1/4 cup crumbled feta
  • 2 Tbs. coarsely chopped fresh mint
  • 2 Tbs. coarsely chopped fresh cilantro
Make the vinaigrette:

With a mortar and pestle, pound the garlic and a pinch of salt to a paste, or mince the garlic, sprinkle with salt, and mash into a paste with the side of a chef’s knife.

Combine the garlic paste and 1 Tbs. of the lemon juice in a small bowl and let sit for 10 minutes. Combine the shallot with the remaining 1/2 Tbs. lemon juice and a pinch of salt in another small bowl and let sit for 10 minutes. Whisk the olive oil, cumin, and cayenne into the garlic mixture. Season to taste with salt or cayenne, if necessary.

Grill the eggplant:

Prepare a medium-high charcoal or gas grill fire. Brush both sides of the eggplant slices with olive oil and season with salt. Grill (covered on a gas grill; uncovered on a charcoal grill) until golden-brown grill marks form, 3 to 4 minutes. Turn the eggplant and grill until tender and well marked on the second sides, 3 to 4 minutes more. The interior should be grayish and soft rather than white and hard.

Top grilled eggplant slices with the shallots, feta, and herbs. Whisk the vinaigrette and drizzle it on top. Serve immediately.

nutrition information (per serving):
Size : with grilled eggplant; Calories (kcal): 160; Fat (g): 15; Fat Calories (kcal): 130; Saturated Fat (g): 3; Protein (g): 2; Monounsaturated Fat (g): 10; Carbohydrates (g): 6; Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 1.5; Sodium (mg): 260; Cholesterol (mg): 5; Fiber (g): 3;

Photo: Scott Phillips

This is delicious and easy. I've made it many times and it always gets rave reviews!

I sliced the eggplant the long way, put it on arugula and topped with a few toasted pine nuts. A favorite in our house.

Delicious, made eggplant believers out of my entire family, finally. Have made several times and always very well received.

Terrific taste and great presentation. Did not have shallots so used scallions. Spouse says "make it again"

This recipe has become "an old reliable" to my list of favorites. Absolutely delicious!

This eggplant was absolutely delicious!

Was delicious. Did this with a roasted leg of lamb and yogurt sauce. http://ifyougiveagrillapizza.com/

A great summer dish! For a main course, I lay the eggplant over arugula tossed with the dressing. yum.

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