Eggplant Caviar {FFwD} — A Rewind, of Sorts

This week’s recipe for French Fridays with Dorie was actually a repeat for me. This was the first recipe I made from Around My French Table before French Fridays even started. The only change I made this time was to add some slow-roasted tomatoes.

You can read the original post that I wrote about getting Dorie’s book and this recipe in September, 2010, by clicking here. Rather than blogging about the recipe again, I’m excerpting part of the original post here:

This is really a simple recipe (which, in case you’re wondering, has no caviar in it). The first step is to roast the eggplants.

In a sidebar Dorie suggests slitting the eggplant and stuffing it with slivered garlic. I followed her suggestion, and the roasted garlic gave the eggplant great depth of flavor. I baked the eggplants for 45 minutes, until they were soft and wrinkly.

Once the eggplants had cooled, I halved each one and scooped out the meat. I think I should have baked the eggplants another 15 minutes or so, as some of it didn’t scoop out cleanly. I was able to get most of the meat into the bowl, where I mixed it with garlic and olive oil. (As a side note, if you stuff the eggplant with garlic, you might want to cut back a bit on the raw garlic.)  The recipe says to mash everything together with a fork, but I found it easier to squish it up with my fingers. [Note: the second time I made this recipe, I roasted the eggplants a bit longer, and the meat scooped out better and mashed beautifully with a fork.]

After the eggplant meat was sufficiently broken down, I added the remaining ingredients — lemon zest and juice, onion, basil, thyme, cilantro, cayenne, salt, and pepper [and the second time, roasted tomatoes marinated in olive oil].

The recipe doesn’t specify how much salt to add; I found that it needed quite a bit, about 2-3 teaspoons. I used black truffle salt, which gave the dish amazing flavor. I also added healthy amounts of black pepper and cayenne.

I was hooked on Dorie from the time I tried this recipe, and I went on to make about half a dozen others from AMFT before French Fridays started. 

When this recipe came up for French Fridays, I actually forgot I had made it before. I’m glad, because had I remembered I might have passed on making it again; and this is definitely one worth repeating.

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15 Comments

  1. Tasty Mayhem said,

    August 21, 2011 at 11:34 pm

    black truffle salt – yum! Must find some and try it in this dish. my eggplant was small, but it did need some salting too…

  2. dulceshome said,

    August 21, 2011 at 10:36 am

    Roasted tomatoes and truffle salt… Sounds fabulous!

    • gaaarp said,

      August 21, 2011 at 10:49 am

      They definitely dressed it up a bit (although it was still an ugly duckling).

  3. Teresa said,

    August 20, 2011 at 5:51 am

    This was a winner for me, too. It’s great that you got to revisit the dish, using the slow-roasted tomatoes.

    • gaaarp said,

      August 20, 2011 at 8:14 am

      Thanks, glad to hear you liked it, too.

  4. Betsy said,

    August 19, 2011 at 10:45 pm

    I just made the basic version (with chopped tomatoes) and it was delcious. I’m guessing the version with those wonderful slow-roasted tomatoes was over the top.

    • gaaarp said,

      August 20, 2011 at 8:11 am

      The roasted tomatoes definitely added another layer of flavor. I was glad I had them to use for this dish.

  5. Kathy said,

    August 19, 2011 at 7:05 pm

    Your caviar looks wonderful…I really enjoyed this one too! Have a nice week-end!

    • gaaarp said,

      August 20, 2011 at 8:10 am

      Thanks, I found the caviar hard to photograph, as it looks kind of gray and blobby.

  6. August 19, 2011 at 6:55 pm

    I want the whole platter. I’m really loving this challenge.

  7. Liz said,

    August 19, 2011 at 12:04 pm

    Glad you enjoyed this one, too (and TWICE :)).

    • gaaarp said,

      August 20, 2011 at 8:09 am

      Thanks. It was definitely worth a repeat.

  8. Cher said,

    August 19, 2011 at 8:25 am

    I must say, this is not one I would have tried if left to my own devices – but I was pleasantly surprised. (We had ours while it was still warm, which was really nice).
    Have a great Friday!

    • gaaarp said,

      August 19, 2011 at 9:33 am

      Thanks, Cher. You, too!


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