Pickled Grilled Eggplant
Remove the stem end from the eggplants. Cut each eggplant in half lengthwise, and slice into half-inch thick moon slices. In a large mixing bowl, toss the eggplant with the kosher salt and let stand for about 15 to 20 minutes. Rinse and dry the eggplant well, and toss with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and a pinch of pepper. Heat a grill pan over high heat. When the grill pan is hot, cook the eggplant slices until nicely marked on both sides.
Meanwhile in a small mixing bowl whisk the sugar, and garlic into the vinegar, whisk in the chili paste and remaining olive oil. Add the herbs and check for seasoning with salt and pepper.
When the eggplant is marked nicely on both sides remove it from the pan and add it immediately to the marinade (a shallow baking dish works nicely to ensure that all of the eggplant is coated in marinade). Let the eggplant cool to room temperature and serve, or refrigerate in a sealed container.
Recipe courtesy Michael Chiarello, 2007