Loaded with flavour this dish can be served as the main or as an accompaniment to your main protein - so versatile!
- 1 large purple eggplant (about 1 lb/500 g)
- 2 Tbsp (30 mL) canola oil
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tsp (5 mL) ground cumin
- 1 tsp (5 mL) sweet paprika
- 1/2 cup (125 mL) chopped fresh cilantro
- 1 can (14.5 oz) chopped low sodium tomatoes or 1 pound ripe red tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped
- Trim ends off eggplant, with a vegetable peeler or paring knife. Pare off alternating strips of skin so that the eggplant appears striped. Cut the eggplant into 1-inch cubes. Sprinkle with salt and toss well.
- In a 10-inch sauté pan, warm canola oil over medium-high heat. Add eggplant and sauté 1 minute. Add the garlic and sauté 30 seconds. Reduce heat to low and cover pan; sweat eggplant for 10 minutes until soft. Stir in cumin, paprika, and cilantro, and sauté until mixture smells fragrant, about 10 seconds. Stir in the tomatoes and bring to a boil.
- Turn heat to medium-low and sauté until mixture is thickened and some eggplant is smooth and some chunky, about 7 minutes. Turn off heat and let mixture sit for 5 to 10 minutes before serving to settle the flavours.
To make as a main vegetarian dish, add a can of chickpeas and serve with couscous or rice.
Eggplant is tricky to cook because its spongy texture soaks up so much oil that it can become greasy. The solution is to use the "sweating" technique, which means to sauté the vegetable quickly, then cover the pan so it softens in its own juices. That way the natural eggplant flavor really shines through. Another tip with eggplant is to pare off only part of the skin so that some of the pieces become soft and some stay firmer when cooked.
Recipe courtesy of canolainfo.org
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