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Ottolenghi Eggplant with Buttermilk Sauce and Pomegranates

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I’ve said this more than a couple of times –  I just adore my Yotam Ottolenghi cookbooks. All of them. I want to cook my way through each one. Here’s a dish I recently tried and of course – loved! This one comes from the cookbook: Plenty – Vibrant Vegetable Recipes from London’s Ottolengi (yes, it’s a must-have cookbook!).

 

Eggplant with Buttermilk Sauce

 

eggplant and buttermilk sauce

Eggplant with Buttermilk Sauce and Pomegranates / Plenty Cookbook

Ingredients

  • 2 large and long eggplants
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tsp lemon thyme leaves, plus a few whole sprigs to garnish
  • Maldon sea salt and black pepper
  • 1 pomegranate
  • 1 tsp za’atar

Sauce:

  • 9 tbsp buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup Greek yogurt
  • 1 1/2 tbsp olive oil, plus a drizzle to finish
  • 1 small garlic clove, crushed
  • Pinch of salt

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Cut the eggplants in half lengthways, cutting straight through the green stalk (the stalk is for the look; don’t eat it). Use a small sharp knife to make three or four parallel incisions in the cut side of each eggplant half, without cutting through to the skin. Repeat at a 45-degree angle to get a diamond-shaped pattern.
  2. Place the eggplant halves, cut-side up, on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Brush them with olive oil—keep on brushing until all of the oil has been absorbed by the flesh. Sprinkle with the lemon thyme leaves and some salt and pepper. Roast for 35 to 40 minutes, at which point the flesh should be soft, flavorful and nicely browned. Remove from the oven and allow to cool down completely.
  3. While the eggplants are in the oven, cut the pomegranate into two horizontally. Hold one half over a bowl, with the cut side against your palm, and use the back of a wooden spoon or a rolling pin to gently knock on the pomegranate skin. Continue beating with increasing power until the seeds start coming out naturally and falling through your fingers into the bowl. Once all are there, sift through the seeds to remove any bits of white skin or membrane.
  4. To make the sauce. Whisk together all of the ingredients. Taste for seasoning, then keep cold until needed.
  5. To serve, spoon plenty of buttermilk sauce over the eggplant halves without covering the stalks. Sprinkle za’atar and plenty of pomegranate seeds on top and garnish with lemon thyme. Finish with a drizzle of olive oil.

 

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About the author / 

Terry Dagrosa

Terry Dagrosa, founder and publisher of SeductionMeals.com. As President of Digital Marketing Collective and Tara del Mar Productions, she has extensive experience in sales, design, digital marketing and social media. "Truly great friends are hard to find, difficult to leave, and impossible to forget, so we’re thrilled to introduce our very special and highly-talented contributors and friends.  They’ll share their mouth-watering recipes, cheeky anecdotes and delightfully creative perspectives with all of us. Be sure to check out their websites and follow them, too – we promise you’ll learn to love and cherish them as much as we do!" xoxo

6 Comments

  1. john pardoe April 2, 2016 at 8:19 am -  Reply

    I’m pretty sure that the wrong temperature is listed? Not much browning or cooking going on in a 200 degrees Fahrenheit.

    • Terry Dagrosa April 2, 2016 at 8:57 am -  Reply

      Hi John, thank you so much. Nice catch – you are right! It should be 400 degrees F!

  2. macro calculator April 10, 2016 at 12:53 pm -  Reply

    Ive never added pomegranate to anything before and can’t wait to try it. Thanks for the recipe!

    • Terry Dagrosa April 10, 2016 at 1:05 pm -  Reply

      Pomegranates are wonderful to cook with. Once you try some recipes with this tasty treat you’ll look at pomegranates in a whole different light – grabbing them when they are in season for recipes like this one. I’ve used them in salads, side dishes, in yogurt and so much more. I hope you get to try the recipe! Let us know what you think.

  3. Rach’s Recipes April 13, 2016 at 2:55 am -  Reply

    I cut these up and served them on top of toasty crusty bread. Really good. Considering that I never cooked with pomegranate before this came out excellent – thank you!

    • Terry Dagrosa April 13, 2016 at 8:05 am -  Reply

      I am so happy to hear that! And I bet it would taste wonderful on toasted bread or warm pita.

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Seduction Meals is about Food + Romance, and everything in-between. . . a sumptuous menu, alluring presentation, sensuous music, luscious cocktails and the right ambiance. Like a precious gift, preparing a romantic meal for two is about making that certain someone feel extra special. With just the right combination of ambience and culinary delights, you too can create a memorable, delicious experience for your loved one. Seduction Meals. Everyone has one - what's YOURS?

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Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take but by the moments that take our breath away.