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CLINTON KELLY Grilled Japanese Eggplant with Fresh Tomato Sauce

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ingredients
GRILLED JAPANESE EGGPLANT WITH FRESH TOMATO SAUCE

GRILLED EGGPLANT

  • 3 Japanese eggplants (sliced in half, lengthwise)
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

TO SERVE

  • 1 recipe Fresh Tomato Sauce (below)
  • 1 cup fresh cow’s milk ricotta (dollop on top)
  • freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • 1 bunch fresh basil (torn)

FRESH TOMATO SAUCE

  • 1 small yellow onion (chopped)
  • 3 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 4-5 medium- large farm fresh tomatoes (chopped)
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • kosher and freshly ground black pepper
directions
  • Preheat grill or grill-pan to medium-high heat.
  • Season eggplant with salt and pepper and drizzle with olive oil.
  • Place eggplant on grill and cook for 10-15 minutes, until the exterior is charred and the interior is cooked through.
  • Serve the grilled eggplant halves along with tomato sauce. Top with a generous dollop of ricotta, grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, and torn basil.
  • Fresh Tomato Sauce: in a medium sauce pot over medium heat, add olive oil, onion and garlic. Cook until fragrant. Add the fresh tomatoes, simmer for 20 minutes, until the flesh breaks down, season with salt and pepper to taste. Remove from heat.
  • Sauce can be made ahead of time and stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator.  When ready to serve, heat in a small saucepan over medium heat. 
  • Tips:
    – Use a zucchini instead of eggplant for a different grilled flavor.
    – Make the tomato sauce ahead of time and store in the refrigerator. It is a delicious accompaniment to pasta or grilled seafood and vegetables.
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