I bought a butternut squash at a farm stand yesterday. Yikes, I guess it’s september already. I also bought a basket full of plums and pounds of field tomatoes for slow roasting. It’s such a good season. Oh and we’re moving again. Yes we’re heading back to the mountains where we belong. I guess that’s why I find myself thinking a lot about ‘home‘ these days. Other than our clothes, camping equipment and a food processor we don’t really have many belongings. I thought for sure by the time I was a real adult I would at least own a decent couch. But I think secretly I kind of like it this way. Every time we move I find a few more things that I can leave behind and I always feel a little bit lighter. We’re not too picky about interior design which is why I think we always seem to find something that works for us. I looked around our kitchen yesterday, there is a plastic tablecloth covered in pictures of fruit that was here when we moved and I just couldn’t bring myself to take off. The fridge is old and the tiles are quite tacky but there is some home made jam in that fridge and sourdough on the counter and some seasonal fruit hanging around. The tomatoes were slow roasting in the oven and the afternoon sun was shining through the kitchen window right onto the tablecloth and I thought – these are the things that make any house a home.
I don’t buy eggplants any other time of year than september, it’s just not worth it. If there aren’t local they are often a disappointment. But right now they are just the right size and color and man are they ever good. The season doesn’t last too long so we’ve been eating a lot of them lately. The good thing is they go really well with tomatoes, and also squash. Happy late summer x
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ROASTED EGGPLANT SANDWICH WITH HARISSA RELISH + HUMMUS
There is much debate over whether or not to salt your eggplant before cooking it. It’s something that I’ve always done and I’ve never had the misfortune of a bitter eggplant, so I figure it just works. I’ll leave that step up to you. If you’re ok with dairy this sandwhich can easily be served warm with some grilled halloumi (yum) or you can stir some crumbled feta in the relish for extra salty creamy-ness. Again, I’ll leave that up to you. If you have extra harissa relish on hand it makes a great addition to grains, eggs or roasted vegetables.
Makes 2-4 sandwhiches.
1 medium eggplant, sliced into 1/2 inch rounds
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
Sea salt + black pepper
2 roasted red peppers, homemade or store bought
1 tablespoon Mina Spicy Harissa
1 clove garlic, finely grated with a mircoplane
1/2 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
Sea salt + black pepper
Hummus, homemade or store bought
Greens of choice (I used arugula)
4 slices of wholegrain sourdough bread, toasting optional
Layer eggplant slices in a colander, sprinkling generously with salt between each layer. Place the colander in the sink or over a plate and let the eggplants sit for half an hour, some water should seep out.
Preheat the oven to 400 F / 200 c
In a large bowl toss eggplant slices with smoked paprika and olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Add more olive oil if needed, just enough to coat each slice generously.
Pat dry the eggplant with a clean kitchen towel and place in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet line with parchment. Roast in the oven until soft and tender, flipping once, about 35 – 40 minutes.
To make the relish, place all ingredients in a small blender and pulse to combine. You can also finely chop the roasted red pepper and stir the ingredients together. Place in the fridge.
To assemble: spread one slice of sourdough with hummus, top with roasted eggplant, sliced tomato, harissa relish and greens. Spread top half with a little extra hummus, close and enjoy.
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