Shalom Life | October 08, 2014

The Nosh Pit - Kosher Recipes With Eggplant

Nothing says yummy, comforting, and warming in the fall more than eggplant-centric dishes.

By: Sara Torvik

Published: October 6th, 2014 in Culture » Food » Recipes

It could get messy, but it will always be memorable. Every week in the Nosh Pit, we’ll lead the gathering of an impassioned group of foodies, offering delectable dishes, seasonal treats, and other goodies to nosh upon.

We’ll introduce the timely scenario – what to bring to an obligatory sports party or contribute to a spring picnic--and share some auspicious recipes. Spice up a soiree, diversify your dinner, or help convince those reluctant souls that ‘soy substitute’ is not synonymous with ‘stale.’

Recipes are best shared, passed from one sated soul to the next, with everyone adding just their own flair, and creating endless yummy possibilities. At a concert, people shed inhibition and share passion in a moment of synergy and excitement; they will do the same in the Nosh Pit, directing their unparalleled enthusiasm towards food.

Kosher Eggplant Recipes

Learning to cook with eggplant can be somewhat intimidating since it’s not an ingredient that many people use on a regular basis. But if you’re interested in experimenting with eggplant and learning how to make some simple and delicious meals, then look no further. These recipes are a great place to start and will be sure to leave everyone at your kitchen table satisfied and wanting more.

Mooshi’s Cooked Eggplant Salad from Tori Avey

Ingredients

  • 2 large eggplants
  • 6 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 red or yellow bell peppers, seeded and cut into chunks
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 can (15 oz) tomato sauce
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp salt (or to taste)
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper

You will also need

  • Nonstick skillet, 6-7 quart pot

Total Time: 1 Hour 35 Minutes

Servings: 12 side portions

Kosher Key: Pareve

Peel the eggplant in stripes, keeping a few strips of skin intact so they run down the sides of the eggplant vertically. These strips of skin will help to hold the chunks of eggplant together; they also add flavor.

Heat 2 tbsp olive oil in a large skillet over medium. Cut the eggplant into 1-inch chunks. Put half of the chunks into the skillet and let them fry for about 10 minutes.

When the cubes begin to turn golden brown, transfer them to a larger pot. Add 2 tbsp of olive oil to the skillet and fry the second batch of eggplant chunks the same way, for about 10 minutes till golden brown. Transfer the chunks to the large pot.

Add 2 tbsp of olive oil to the skillet and add the bell pepper chunks. Let them fry for about 3 minutes. Add the minced garlic and continue to fry for 2 more minutes, till the garlic is fragrant.

Transfer peppers and garlic to the large pot.

In a mixing bowl, whisk together the tomato sauce, water, cumin, salt, sugar, crushed red pepper flakes and black pepper.

Pour the liquid mixture into the large pot and bring all ingredients to a boil.

Reduce heat to a medium-low simmer and cover the pot, leaving a small gap open to vent. Let the mixture slowly simmer for 1 hour till sauce is thickened and reduced. Remove from heat.

This cooked salad can be served hot or cold depending on preference. Our family enjoys it at room temperature. You can serve it with freshly baked bread if you wish. If you’re gluten free, you can enjoy this recipe on its own or served as a vegan stew over rice or quinoa.

Eggplant Parmesan-Roman Style from Joy of Kosher

Ingredients

  • 3 large eggplant, sliced lengthwise into 1 inch thick slices (you will need 12 slices)
  • kosher salt for purging*
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 ½ cup unseasoned Panko breadcrumbs
  • 24 fresh basil leaves
  • 1 cup confit tomatoes, or favorite tomato sauce
  • 24 slices mozzarella cheese (optional)
  • ½ cup Parmesan cheese (optional)
  • olive oil or canola oil for frying
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Directions

  1. Place the eggplant slices on a wire rack or cooling rack over a cookie sheet. Heavily cover the eggplant slices, on both sides, with the kosher salt. Let the eggplant sit for one hour. (see below for explanation)
  2. Rinse off the salt and pat dry the eggplant thoroughly. Place the flour in a pie pan or container that can accommodate the eggplant. Place the eggs in a separate container. Place the breadcrumbs and fresh herbs in a third container.
  3. Heat a large sauté pan with about ½ inch of olive oil over medium-high heat.
  4. Place the eggplant in the flour and dredge to coat completely. Dip the eggplant in the eggs and finally in the breadcrumbs. Fry the eggplant in the hot oil until it is golden brown, flip and fry on the other side. Transfer the eggplant to a sheet pan lined with paper towels. Repeat the process until all the slices are browned.
  5. Transfer six eggplant slices to another sheet pan. Spoon three tablespoons of sauce on top of each slice. Top with one slice of mozzarella cheese and a basil leaf. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese. Place a second slice of eggplant on top of each eggplant. Spoon additional sauce, more cheese and basil on top. Bake the eggplant until the cheese has melted (about 15 minutes). Serve with green salad and fresh herbs lightly dressed with extra virgin olive oil

*The practice of salting eggplant before cooking is not to remove bitter juices. Eggplants are made of mostly water held in small cells. Not removing the water before frying would result in soggy, greasy eggplant. By purging the cells of the water we remove the water and collapse the cells so they do not absorb the oil during frying. This keeps the eggplant crispy and keeps it from being greasy.

Roasted Eggplant Spread from Yummly

Recipe lightly adapted from Ina Garten

1 medium eggplant
2 red bell peppers
1 medium red onion
3-4 cloves garlic
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon tomato paste or pureed oven-roasted tomatoes

Preheat oven to 400 and line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil. Set aside. Chop eggplant, peppers, and onion into 1″ cubes. Smash the garlic. Toss together the vegetables and then drizzle them in olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Toss to evenly coat the vegetables and then spread them over the prepared baking sheet. Place the pan in the oven and roast the vegetables for 20 minutes. Flip/stir the vegetables with a spatula and then roast for another 20 minutes or until the vegetables are tender and browning. Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly. Place the roasted vegetables along with the tomato paste or roasted tomatoes into a blender or food processor and pulse until the desired consistency is reached. Serve warm with slices of sourdough bread, pita chips, flatbread, or Rosemary Focaccia. You can also toss this sauce with hot pasta for a light vegetarian meal.

Roasted Eggplant Pasta from iVillage

Ingredients

1 large eggplant

Kosher salt

2 tablespoons olive oil + more for brushing eggplant

1 pound of fettuccini, spaghetti or other long pasta

2 cloves garlic, sliced paper-thin

8 cheery peppers or ½ red bell pepper, seeded and sliced

Grated Grana Padano or Parmesan cheese

Freshly ground black pepper

Directions

1. Line a large baking sheet with a cooling rack or paper towels.

2. Trim the ends of the eggplant and cut lengthwise into 1/2-inch thick slices. Line the eggplant slices on the prepared baking sheet and sprinkle liberally with kosher salt. Cover the eggplant with another baking sheet and weight down with heavy cans or cookbooks.

3. Let the eggplant sit, weighted, for 20 minutes to press excess water out of the vegetable.

4. While the eggplant sits, preheat the oven to 400. Bring a 4-quart stockpot filled with water to a boil and add 1 tablespoon kosher salt.

5. Pat the eggplant slices dry and cut into smaller strips about 3-4 inches long. Place on a clean baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a Silpat. Brush lightly with olive oil and roast for 10 minutes, until dry and lightly browned.

6. Add the pasta to the boiling water and cook according to package directions until al dente.

7. Place the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil and the sliced garlic in a large skillet or saute pan over low heat. Cook gently for 2 minutes, then add the sliced peppers and cook until the peppers are softened but still retain their bite, about 3-5 minutes more.

8. Add the drained pasta to the pan and cook for 1 minute, stirring to coat the pasta.

9. Serve with grated cheese and freshly ground black pepper, if desired.

Find more delicious eggplant-centric dishes on the next page!

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