Tag Archives: eggplant

Homemade Falafel and A Garlic Smörgåsbord

Last weekend, Lindi and I hosted a guest for dinner and I happened to be in the mood to cook up a storm (I love rainy Sundays for that!).  Because of our limited refrigerator resources and the fact that we’re trying to eat down our pantry, I chose a mix of Mediterranean, Middle Eastern, and Indian dishes with an overall theme of GARLIC!

Menu:
Spicy falafels
Baba Ganush
Garlic naan
Tomato and cucumber salad
Tahini yogurt sauce

1. Falafel
This recipe was based on Julie Negrin’s creation featured in her fabulous cookbook Easy Meals to Cook with Kids. I don’t have children, but I can tell you that every single recipe in that book is a winner. Everyone should have a copy in their cookbook arsenal!

Ingredients (adapted from Easy Meals to Cook with Kids)
2 cans chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1 small onion, diced
1 small red potato, chopped, boiled until tender, and drained
2 tbsp flour
2 tsp. salt
2 tbsp. bread crumbs
2 tbsp. olive oil
2 tsp. corriander
1 tsp. cumin
1/4 cup parsley, chopped
1 tsp. baking powder
4 cloves garlic, diced
1 tbsp. red pepper flakes
1 tsp. smoked paprika

1. Preheat your oven to 375*. Place chickpeas in a large bowl and mash with a potato masher or the back of a heavy fork (this takes a little elbow grease!). Add in boiled potatoes and mash.
2. Add the rest of the ingredients and thoroughly stir everything together.

3. Roll into golf ball-sized balls then gently flatten them with the palm of your hand.

5.  Line baking sheets with aluminum foil and lightly oil. Place falafels on the baking sheets and drizzle with a little extra virgin olive oil. Bake for 15 minutes, flip the falafels over and bake for another 15 minutes, or until they are browned.

2. Baba Ganush

Ingredients
1 large eggplant
1 lemon
2 Garlic cloves, minced
1/2 tsp Salt
1/2 Cup of Tahini
parsley for garnish
olive oil & paprika for garnish

1. Preheat oven to 400*
2. Poke a bunch of holes in the eggplant with a fork and rub a bit of extra virgin olive oil on the surface.
3. Stick the eggplant on a baking sheet and bake in the oven until the skin is withered. It took about 40 minutes for mine to do this, but I have an old oven, so yours might take considerable less time — just keep an eye on it.

THIS:

Should turn into THIS:

4. Take the eggplant out of the oven and let it sit until it’s cool enough to handle.
5. Cut the eggplant open and scoop out the insides (you can throw away the skin).

6.  Place the insides of the eggplant and the rest of the ingredients into a blender or food processor. Blend until smooth (if mixture is too thick, you might need to add a dash of water).
7.  Serve on a plate or bowl and garnish with parsley, paprika, and a drizzle of olive oil.

3. Garlic Naan

4. Tomato & Cucumber Salad

Ingredients:
2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
1 small cucumber, halved
1 tsp. sea salt
1 tsp. freshly ground pepper

1.  Add all ingredients into a small bowl and chill for at least 15 minutes.

5. Tahini & Yogurt Sauce

Ingredients:
1 cup yogurt (I used my homemade yogurt, which is always in the house!)
2 tbsp. tahini
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp. onion powder
Handful of parsley, chopped

1. Combine all ingredients in a small bowl and mix by hand
2. Refrigerate for at least 20 minutes before serving.

All together:

This was a lovely and light dinner; well worth the effort!

What’s your favorite dish to serve at dinner parties?

 

Don’t forget to join the new Facebook Page!

Advertisements

Cilantro, Roasted Pepper, and Grilled Eggplant Pasta Salad

Why is it that my “clean out the fridge” dishes are always my best recipes? Maybe I should start buying groceries blindfolded; I would be the best chef in New York City!

Ingredients
2  cups Brown rice pasta (can substitute any kind of pasta)
1 large handful fresh cilantro, chopped
1/2 eggplant
1 small onion
1 red pepper
1 tomato, chopped
handful of cured black olives (can substitute any kind of olive)
1 cup fresh Parmesan, grated
2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
Salt and pepper to taste

1. Cook pasta as directed.
2. Cut eggplant and onion lengthwise into long thin slices.
3. Grill Eggplant

4. Grill Onions (and more eggplant!)

5. Cut eggplant into bite sized pieces and roughly chop the grilled onions.

6.  Roast red pepper. Let the pepper sit after roasting for a few minutes on the cutting board, then cut into bite sized pieces.
7. Pit and roughly chop olives.

8. Assemble the salad!

9. Add lemon juice, salt and pepper. Stir gently to combine.

I almost died from heat exhaustion after grilling and boiling the water for this dish (when is it going to be bearable outside?!), so I chilled the salad for about 15 minutes before we dove in. It was delicious, but I’m sure it would be just as good served warm!

 

 

P.S. I’m looking for some healthy no-cook dinner ideas. Anyone have a good dish?