Eggplant Spread Salad / Salată de Vinete

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Posted By: Dan Petra
Posted In:  Traditional Recipes
Page Views:  1996 views
Preparation Time:  30 minutes
Cooking Time:  60 minutes
Course: breakfast


Other Info

servings: 6-10

Ingredients

U.S.

Ingredients

European

1

Eggplant (large)

1

1

Onion

1

3-4

garlic cloves (optional)

3-4

2 Tbs

Oil

2 Tbs

1 tsp

Vinegar

5 ml

To taste

Salt

To taste

To taste

Pepper

To taste


Directions

1. Roast eggplant over an open flame until blackened all over (don’t forget the ends).

2. Place blackened eggplants in cold water to cool them quickly. As soon as they are cool enough to handle, peel them and rinse off any bits of charred skin. (If they sit too long in their blackened skin the flesh will begin to taste bitter and burned).

3. Place clean eggplants in a colander to drain for 10 min.

4. Chop eggplant very fine with a wooden or stainless steel knife. Put it back in the colander to drain 10 min (or until its done dripping).

5. While eggplant is draining, finely chop onion and garlic (optional).

6. When eggplant is ready, transfer to a large bowl (not metal). Add chopped onion, garlic (if using), vinegar and salt and pepper to taste. If using mayonnaise, add now and blend well. Taste again and adjust as needed. Serve cold.   

                                                                             

Notes: This spread can be found EVERYWHERE in Romania and it is delicious served with bread, veggies or eaten plain. If you are in a hurry, you can find eggplant in jars in most supermarkets. Or if you make your own, it freezes well. It is well worth roasting your own eggplants for the good flavor. Here are some tips:

 

To roast the eggplants outside, you can use a grill (just place the eggplants low over the flames and cook – turning frequently – until blackened and soft), or you can roast them directly on hot coals. To use the hot coals, wait for the fire to die down and consolidate the coals. Place the eggplants directly on the coals. Turn the eggplants every 10 min or so (depending on how hot your coals are) until they are soft and blackened all the way around.

 

To roast the eggplant inside, you can use your stovetop or your oven. Doing it over the stovetop is a bit tricky and messy. You must place the eggplant directly over the burner flame and carefully turn it until it is blackened and soft all the way around (including the ends). It is a bit easier to use your oven – to do this, remove the bottom panel of the oven (that covers the flame) and cover the whole burner with tin foil (be sure the flame can still come out the sides). You should also put tin foil or a large pan in the bottom of the oven to catch the eggplant juices. If you don’t protect your oven, you’ll spend all day cleaning it - otherwise your apartment will smell like “burning” for a long time. Once your oven is protected, you can light it, and place the eggplants on the oven rack at its lowest position. Adjust the oven flame as needed and turn eggplants until they are blackened and soft.

 

Variations: A very popular “creamy” variation on this recipe is made using mayonnaise. For this option, omit oil and vinegar. Instead, add 1 Tbs of mayo at a time until you like the flavor and consistency of the salad (everyone uses a different amount). For a fresher flavor, use the original recipe with green onion instead of regular onion and replace the vinegar with lemon juice. Very tasty.

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