Thursday, September 15, 2011

Eggplant and Mint Bruschette: A Pretty in Purple Toasty Open-Faced Sandwich

I love good fresh bread with a crunchy crust and soft and slightly chewy within. I am however much too lazy to make it myself. I know people find it relaxing and zen-like, but I find that I have things I would much rather spend my timing doing--especially when it's warm and humid in the kitchen and my schedule is tight. We are celebrating bread at I Heart Cooking Clubs this week and many of our group will be "getting their yeast on." I went the quick and easy route and honored the almighty bread with the recipe for Eggplant and Mint Bruschette from "Jamie's Italy."

I used a nice fresh loaf of multi-grain, seeded bread from the farmers market, where I also picked up a couple of round Italian eggplant (also local in case you were wondering). With parsley and mint from my garden and my trusty grill pan in hand, I had a simple supper dish ready in no time.

Jamie says, "A bruschette is a kind of open sandwich and it's probably where the idea for cheese on toast originally came from."

Basic Bruschette
From "Jamie's Italy"

If you have a large loaf, cut it in half, then slice it crossways about a half-inch thick. Grill the slices on a grill or in a griddle pan until they are crisp on both sides, then lightly rub each piece a couple of times with a clove of cut garlic. Drizzle with some good extra virgin olive oil and sprinkle with a tiny pinch of salt. You can eat the toasted bread just like this, but make sure the oil is the best you can find, otherwise it will never taste good.


Eggplant and Mint Topping
From "Jamie's Italy"

2 nice firm eggplants, the round purple Italian ones if possible, sliced lengthwise about 1/4-inch thick
extra virgin olive oil
white wine or herb vinegar
2 sprigs of fresh flat-leaf parsley, leaves picked and finely sliced
a small handful of fresh mint, leaves picked and finely sliced
1 clove of garlic, peeled and very finely sliced
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Heat a griddle pan until nice and hot. Lay your eggplant slices on it side by side, and when they are nicely charred on both sides, put them in a bowl. You will probably need to do this in several batches. While the eggplants are grilling, put 8 tablespoons of olive oil and 3 tablespoons of vinegar, with the parsley, mint, and garlic, into another bowl and season with salt and pepper. When the eggplant are all done, add them to the dressing and mix around, then check the seasonings again and divide onto the bruschette. Press the topping into the toast so all the lovely flavor gets sucked in!

Notes/Results: A simple but delicious recipe that makes the most of a few fresh ingredients. The toasted bread soaked up the dressing (so flavorful with the mint and parsley) very well, and the thinly sliced eggplant piled up for a satisfying open-faced sandwich. Quick and easy to make, tasty and pretty to look at, I will make this again for sure.



Pam said...

We both posted eggplant today!

girlichef said...

Well, that is definitely beautiful! You got your yeast on just did it the easy way ;P But hey, that bread looks fabulous, so I don't blame you one little bit. Delicious!

ARLENE said...

That is a very photogenic panini! I adore eggplant, though I've never paired it with mint. I'll bet it was wonderful.

Abigail (aka Mamatouille) said...

Inspired by your post this morning, I made roasted squash and beet bruschetta this evening: So delish!

Joanne said...

If I were a loaf of bread, I would be honored to be smothered in that bruschette. You did good!

Deb in Hawaii said...

Pam--great minds thinking alike. ;-)

girlichef--it was definitely the easy way. ;-)

Arlene--thanks. Mint + Eggplant = Yum! Kind of gives it a Middle Eastern feel. ;-)

Abigail--that sounds fabulous! ;-)

Joanne--thanks! It's a good way to be smothered I guess. ;-)

Pierce said...

I am a sucker for eggplant. Love brushetta anytime so, a winning combo for me.

Fresh Local and Best said...

I'm always looking for good ways to present eggplant, and this looks scrumptious! I love the way these bruschette look!

Natashya KitchenPuppies said...

What a perfect warm-weather supper! Great way to feature bread. And I am a huge fan of eggplants.

Kim said...

I should've taken the same route as you and just bought my bread. I love the looks of this one, so pretty and fresh. A very pretty simple supper, or lunch. said...

Looks really delicious.