Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Eggplant Bake and Chickpeas on Mustard Greens

Having a veggichop is marvelous! Last night, for example, I made two dishes that required fairly extensive chopping, and this little manually-powered gadget got it ready in a matter of a few pulls of the handle. What did I chop with it? Walnuts, garlic, and tomatoes. Why? To make this dinner:

I'm not sure it's clear from the picture what this dinner included: chickpeas in balsamic glaze over mustard greens and an eggplant bake. I made up the recipe for the eggplant bake all by myself, and I have to say, for someone who only cooked eggplant twice before in all her life, it turned out darn good! [The photo really doesn't do it justice. I should fire the incompetent photographer.]

First, I sliced the eggplants into 1/2" thick rounds, and salted some of the water out of them (line in a colander, salt, wait 20 minutes, turn over, salt again, wait another 20 minutes, soak the liquids). Then I pan fried them with just a tiny bit of oil, and squeezed more water out of them as they became softer, using a fork. Then I arranged them in a baking dish, and topped them with chopped tomatoes, chopped walnuts, feta, garlic powder, and oregano. [I put garlic powder because I realized too late that garlic would probably be good in this dish. I should have chopped some together with the tomatoes. Instead I used it all in the mustard green concoction.] Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes or so (I cooked the greens in the meantime, with some walnuts in them -- my variation) until the feta starts to brown just a little bit. That's it!

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