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grilled eggplant & tomatoes

August 23, 2013

20130804-004224.jpgThe farmer’s market is my favorite part of summer.

Sure, the abundance of kale and leafy greens in the winter is wonderful, and the harvest of apples and Brussels sprouts make autumn eating lovely. But there is nothing like the bounty of summer’s fruits and vegetables, is there?

These are the days when I can’t keep enough tomatoes on my counter or berries in my fridge. I love the sweet white corn, the wide variety of bell peppers (purple! white!), and the summer squashes. I let my peaches ripen until the skin is about to split and then eat them standing over the trash can so the juices can dribble down my chin.

This recipe epitomizes summer. The fresh herbs and tomatoes brighten up the roasted eggplant, and the creamy goat cheese rounds it out beautifully. Throw a few steaks on the grill this weekend and cook these eggplant medallions next to them. Then pour a glass of rosé and dinner is served.

Grilled Eggplant & Tomatoes

1 large eggplant
Olive oil
1-2 ripe heirloom tomatoes
1/2 c goat cheese
2 tbsp. fresh basil, julienned
salt and pepper

Slice the eggplant into 1/2″ rounds. Lay them on a paper towel and sprinkle salt on each side. Set aside for 20 minutes. The salt will draw out the excess moisture and the eggplant rounds will be covered in small beads of water. Blot dry with a paper towel. Brush the slices with a thin layer of olive oil on each side.

Slice the tomatoes into 1/4″ rounds.

Heat grill to medium-high. Place eggplant on grill and cook for 5-6 minutes. Flip, then top with the tomato slices and cover the grill for 5-6 more minutes. Add a tablespoon or two of goat cheese on top of each tomato and close the grill for one more minute so it softens. Remove from the grill and top with the julienned basil, salt and pepper. Serve immediately.

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