With the summertime coming up, and the party and cookout season about to get into full swing, I need some recipes that I can whip up at a moment's notice. I've had this recipe in my "to cook" file for quite some time, and I'm glad I finally got around to it. This recipe is incredible, and it's not your typical spread. I served it with pita chips, and it was a definite winner.
Roasting the vegetables gives it such a nice "warm" flavor, and the addition of balsamic vinegar and lemon juice zest it up. It's also not loaded with fat and empty calories, as many dips are known for.
Mediterranean Eggplant Spread
1 small eggplant
3 cloves garlic
1 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp freshly grated parmesan cheese
salt and pepper to taste
1/4 fresh cilantro, chopped
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Rub eggplant and onion with olive and place on baking sheet. Bake about 25-30 minutes, until both have softened, turning once. About 15 minutes into the cooking time, add garlic to sheet.
Remove from oven, and cool just enough to be able to handle. Cut eggplant in half and scoop out flesh, and place into a food processor. Cut onion into chunks and add to processor with garlic. Process until desired consistency. Add vinegar, lemon juice, parmesan, salt and pepper. Pulse until well mixed. Add cilantro and briefly pulse. Adjust seasonings as necessary. Serve warm or cold.