Garlic-Roasted Eggplant

Total Time:
35 min
15 min
20 min

About 2 cups

  • 2 large eggplants, about 1 1/2 pounds each
  • 4 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 10 cloves garlic, peeled and cut lengthwise into slivers
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt
  • Black pepper
  • Essence, recipe follows
  • 1 lemon, cut into eighths
  • Pita bread, cut into wedges and lightly toasted
  • Essence:
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons paprika
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 2 tablespoons garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon dried leaf oregano
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme
  • Preheat a gas grill (or alternately an oven to 350 degrees F).

  • With a small, sharp knife, cut small slits into each eggplant.

  • Strip the leaves from the thyme sprigs, and chop. Discard the stems. Insert a sliver of garlic and a bit of chopped thyme into each slit in the eggplant. Rub olive oil onto the eggplants. Grill until black on a grill, turning frequently to ensure even roasting, about 15 minutes, or roast on an oiled baking sheet in the preheated oven, about 1 hour.

  • Remove from the heat. Slice eggplant lengthwise and when cool enough to handle, scoop the softened pulp into a bowl. Beat until creamy with olive oil, and sprinkle with salt, pepper, and Essence to taste, and a squeeze of lemon juice. Serve with lemon wedges and toasted pita triangles at the table.

  • Combine all ingredients thoroughly and store in an airtight jar or container.

  • Yield: about 2/3 cup

  • Recipe from New New Orleans Cooking by Emeril Lagasse and Jessie Tirsch. Published by William and Morrow, 1993.

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