Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Roasted Eggplant Salad with Asian Vinaigrette

A healthy, mouthwatering accompaniment to an Asian-themed dinner and the leftovers tasted even better the next day as a lunch.  In fact, I would even recommend making this the day before you want it (if you're able to plan that much in advance, which I am usually not).  The eggplant soaks up more of the dressing and the flavors meld and intensify.

I forgot to pay attention to how much of everything I was using, but I'll give my general estimates.  Make sure to taste test the vinaigrette before pouring over the eggplant and adjust if necessary.

To make the roasted vegetables:

What you need:

Eggplant, cut into 1 inch (or maybe even slightly thicker) rounds.  I used enough to almost cover the bottom of a 13 x 9 pan... probably 5 or 6 baby eggplant or 2 large ones
Jalapeno peppers- 4/5 
1 head of garlic, with the tip top cut off to just reveal the cloves.
Olive oil spray, salt, pepper

Heat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.  Spray a 13x9 pan with olive oil.  Spread the vegetables out on it.  Spray the tops of the vegetables with olive oil.  Season lightly with salt and pepper.  Roast in the oven for 30-45 minutes, or until vegetables are softened and lightly browned.  Remove from oven and allow to cool.  Once, they have cooled a bit, squeeze the garlic out and chop the jalapenos.  At this point, you can remove the skin the eggplant if you want, but I prefer to leave it on.  Place the eggplant in a bowl.  Reserve the jalapenos and garlic for the vinaigrette.

To make the vinaigrette:

What you need:  *Note: these are really just estimates.  I'd say the proportions are pretty accurate, but I'm not sure about the amounts, so you may need to add a little more of everything to get enough to coat the eggplant.

1 tablespoon (or more) soy sauce
juice of a lime
1/4 cup (or more) seasoned rice vinegar
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon chili oil
1 tablespoon sweet chili lime sauce/ marinade
2 teaspoons Huy Fong chili garlic paste (this is pretty spicy, so use less if you don't like spicy)
1 teaspoon black pepper
Garlic Powder (optional, if you really like garlic)
1 roasted head of garlic, cloves squeezed out and chopped (from above)
Roasted jalapeno peppers, chopped roughly (from above)

Mix everything together.  Pour over eggplant and let sit for at least 30 minutes, but preferably much longer (like I said, it was definitely even better the next day).  Enjoy!

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