Spicy Roasted Eggplant
Eggplants become bitter with age so make sure to use them within a few days of purchasing. There is a step in this recipe called degorging. It is very important when working with eggplant because it improves their taste and texture. Salting helps to get the juices in the eggplant flowing (similar to salting meat before cooking) and it draws out the bitterness while preparing the eggplant to absorb all of the good flavors in your recipe.
Makes: 1 roasted eggplant
Preparation time: 25m
Cooking time: 25m
Total time: 45m
- 1 eggplant
- 1/4 cup coarse salt
- 1 tablespoon dried minced onion
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic granules
Equipment: baking sheet, parchment paper, colander
- Preheat oven to 425ºF/220ºC and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Chop the eggplant into either 1” cubes or 1/4” slices and degorge it. This is done by generously sprinkling salt onto the chopped pieces to draw out any bitter liquid in the eggplant. Place the salted eggplant in a colander or on a grate above a bowl or sink for about 20 minutes to let the liquid drain away. Then rinse off the salt in cold water and gently squeeze out any excess liquid. I usually place the squeezed pieces onto paper towels while I work my way through them just to make sure all excess liquid is gone.
- Place the eggplant in a large bowl and toss with the onion, oregano, cumin cayenne and garlic. There’s no need to salt it, it will have absorbed some of the salt from the degorging.
- Place the eggplant on the parchment paper lined baking sheet and bake for 20-30 minutes. They will take a bit longer if they are cubed instead of sliced.
- Toss into a salad, on top of a sandwich or into your favorite pasta dish.