Grilled Eggplant With Tomato, Feta & Basil

Grilled Eggplant With Tomato, Feta & Basil

Grilled Eggplant With Tomato, Feta & Basil

1 cup loosely packed fresh basil leaves
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil

2 medium eggplants (1 3/4 to 2 lb total)

1 large tomato (about 4 inches in diameter) and 2 medium tomatoes (about 2 1/2 inches)

3 oz feta, crumbled (about 3/4 cup)

Finely shredded fresh basil leaves for garnish

Freshly ground black pepper
Sea salt
Blend basil with oil and 1/2 teaspoon salt in blender until finely chopped. Pour into a paper-towel- or coffee-filter-lined sieve set over a bowl and let drain 20 minutes. Save 1 tablespoon basil oil separately for serving. 
light grill  grill for cooking over medium-heat. While grill heats, cut off bottoms of eggplants, then cut 6 (1/2-inch-thick) crosswise rounds from each, starting from cut end. Save remaining eggplant for later. Cut 4 (1/3-inch-thick) rounds from large tomato and 2 center slices (1/3 inch thick) from each medium tomato, save remaining tomato for later.
Lightly brush eggplant rounds on both sides with basil oil and sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Grill on a lightly oiled grill rack, covered only if using a gas grill, turning over occasionally, lightly brushing eggplant with more basil oil occasionally until eggplant is very tender, 6 to 10 minutes. 
Make the stacks: on a baking pan, arrange the 4 largest eggplant rounds side by side and spread each with a generous 1/2 teaspoon of reserved basil solids, then top each with 1 of the 4 largest tomato rounds. Season tomatoes with salt and pepper and top each with about 1 tablespoon feta. Make another layer with medium-size eggplant rounds, basil solids, medium tomato rounds, salt, pepper, and feta, then top with remaining eggplant and feta.
Set baking pan on grill and cook stacks, with grill cover closed, until heated through and cheese on top is softened, about 3 minutes. Transfer stacks to 4 plates and drizzle plates with reserved basil oil.
Serves 4

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