The sweet, tangy jolt of pomegranate molasses is simply divine combined with the smokiness of grilled eggplant.
Technique tip: Salting the eggplant before cooking helps to reduce bitterness and also softens the flesh.
Swap option: If you can't find pomegranate molasses, use aged balsamic vinegar.
- 1 medium to large globe eggplant (about 1 pound), ends trimmed, or 1¼ pounds baby eggplant
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt (optional)
- 3 tablespoons unrefined, cold pressed extra-virgin olive oil
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 2 teaspoons pomegranate molasses
- 1/4 cup fresh mint leaves, small ones left whole, larger ones sliced
- Toasted pine nuts and/or crumbled feta (optional; omit for vegan/dairy-free)
1. Slice the eggplant into 1/2-inch rounds. (If you are using baby eggplants, just halve them through the stem.)
2. If you have time, salt the slices: arrange the slices in one layer on a baking sheet and sprinkle the tops of each slice with kosher salt. Allow to sit at room temperature for 30 to 60 minutes, until the eggplant slices have "sweated." About 15 minutes before you want to cook the eggplant, preheat a grill to medium.
3. Rinse the eggplant and squeeze dry between two paper towels. Arrange them once again on the same baking sheet.
4. Use 2 tablespoons of the oil to brush both sides of each eggplant slice. Sprinkle with pepper to taste.
5. Place the eggplant slices on the grill and cook until golden brown, 5 to 6 minutes (it could take less time depending on temperature of your grill). Flip over and cook the other side.
6. Arrange the eggplant on a platter by slightly overlapping them. Cover the platter with aluminum foil and allow the eggplant to steam to further soften, about 10 minutes.
7. Remove the foil and drizzle eggplant with the remaining tablespoon of oil and the pomegranate molasses and garnish with mint leaves. You can also add toasted pine nuts, as well as crumbled feta.
Excerpted from Kitchen Matters: More than 100 Recipes and Tips to Transform the Way You Cook and Eat—Wholesome, Nourishing, Unforgettable by Pamela Salzman. Copyright © 2017. Available from Da Capo Lifelong Books, an imprint of Perseus Books, LLC, a subsidiary of Hachette Book Group, Inc.