Another wonderful inspiration from Jessica Seinfeld’s new cookbook “The Can’t Cookbook”, even though I can cook there are so many great and easy recipes in this book. This was certainly one of them. I served over pasta (see photos) and it is so easy! Everyone gets nervous about cooking eggplant and I really am not sure why that is, well this will cure you of that fear if you have it. You can just make this as a side dish without the pasta but any reason to eat pasta in this house is a good one.
Eggplants should be smooth-skinned, evenly firm and without soft spots. I bought organic , when I’m eating the peel or the skin I try to buy organic, same goes for tomatoes.
1 large eggplant or 2 small ones
4 cloves garlic
1 pint cherry or grape type tomatoes
6 sprigs fresh thyme
1/3 cup olive oil
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
*1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper ( optional )
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Wash the eggplant and the tomatoes. Cut off and discard the stem. Cut the eggplant into 1 inch thick round pieces. Stack 2 rounds, then slice rounds 2 x and 2x across to make 1″ cubes. ( see photos). Smash the 4 garlic cloves with the back of large knife. Prepare baking dish by spraying lightly with Pam spray.
Place the eggplant , garlic, tomatoes, and thyme in baking dish. Sprinkle salt , pepper and crushed red pepper if you’re using it. With clean hands toss together until the eggplant is coated with olive oil and don’t worry if it’s over-crowded. It will break down and there will be plenty of room.
Roast until the eggplant is really soft and tender. I roasted for an hour and gave it a stir and was good to go.
I served over pasta but you certainly don’t have to have pasta, you can eat this just as is. If you’re serving over pasta you may want to drizzle a little more olive oil into the eggplant and tomato mixture–just for a little more saucier consistency.
Thanks again Jessica .