Sunday, 31 August 2014

Brazilian Roasted Eggplant Salad

There are a few vegetables in this world that I would struggle to live without...eggplant would be one of them! Combined with mushroom, capsicum, zucchini and loads of favourful herbs and aromatics, it's pretty much a done deal that I will be in love with it! This one is not ideal for anyone who has sensitivities to the nightshade family of vegetables (which pretty much consists of eggplant, capsicum, tomato which are all in here!), so be wary if you have that sensitivity, but for those of us who are thankfully unaffected, this is the most gorgeous dish that you could serve in so many ways. I had mine with fish and salad to make it a full dinner.

I had it as a quick throw together meal on a Saturday night when we were all tired, running behind, and just feeling a little over it all...I was craving something loaded with vegetables and full of flavour. I was flicking through a copy of Nourish magazine (highly recommend this magazine - it has some fantastic recipe ideas), and came across a similar dish. I decided to 'pimp it' a little, added some more veges, played with the flavours - ok pretty much just kept the eggplant and capsicum as per the recipe, but that's what cooking is all about...having a play around and making it your own!

This dish would be ideal as a side accompaniment to dinner served with your favourite protein. It would be delicious with lamb, or chicken/fish would also work. And if you preferred a vegetarian option you could add some chickpeas or quinoa, or maybe even crack a couple of eggs into it when cooking for your protein. It would also be yummy for lunch, or could even be a fantastic pizza topping or tapas style dish to serve as part of a platter. The options are endless as you will see when you make it!

 Half baked...

All done! 

A cheeky little glamour shot :)

Brazilian Roasted Eggplant Salad

(gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free, nut-free, soy-free, sugar-free)

1/2 a large eggplant (or one whole small one), cut into half, then quartered and  thinly sliced into batons
1 green capsicum (any colour is fine), thinly sliced
2 zucchini, cut in half then into thin batons
1 cups sliced button mushrooms
2 tomatoes, cut into chunks
1/4 cup sliced black olives (or whole, but make sure you remove the stones if any)
1 onion, thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, grated or finely diced
1 tbsp dried (or fresh) oregano
1 tsp dried mint
1 tbsp coconut or olive oil
1/8 cup apple cider or white wine vinegar
2 tbsp fresh parsley, finely diced, to garnish
salt and pepper to taste

1. Preheat oven to 180C.
2. Prepare vegetables, then add all ingredients except the parsley, to a baking dish. Mix around well to ensure that the oil and vinegar are well distributed, and the vegetables are evenly mixed.
3. Bake for around 30-40 minutes until vegetables are well cooked and 'melty'. 
4. Remove from baking tray and serve in a large bowl - garnish with parsley and you may like to add a drizzle of high quality olive oil to give it a gorgeous extra bit of liquid and burst of flavour