2.10.2012

Grilled Eggplant Veggie Wraps

I have had very little experience with cooking eggplant.  In my first days as a nutritarian I attempted to make ratatouille, but the eggplant was the one thing I picked out and threw away.  I think it turned out so badly because I undercooked it.  When I found a nice eggplant at my grocery store for 98 cents per eggplant, I knew I had to give eggplant another try!  It has sat in my fridge for a day or two until I got up the courage to try to do something with it.  Then, I found this recipe while looking through pintrist and got all the inspiration and courage I needed!  I followed the grilling preparation of the linked recipe, but put my own twist on what went inside the eggplant wrap.  I hope you enjoy!

Grilled Eggplant Veggie Wraps
Serves about 2
Ingredients:
1 eggplant, prep instructions below
salt
3-5 mushrooms, sliced
2 stalks green onion, cut every 2 inches
fresh spinach leaves
several grape tomatoes, sliced in half
your choice of hummus, I used ANK's Roasted Red Pepper Hummus

Directions: An hour and a half before mealtime, cut lengthwise down one third of the eggplant, and save the one third that has been cut off for another meal.  With the remainder of the eggplant, cut the same side into very thin slices down the entirety of the eggplant.  Stop slicing when the other one third of the eggplant is left, also reserve this for another meal.  (So, by doing this, only the center 1/3rd of the eggplant, which is the longest part, has been made into thin slices for the wraps, and the rest of the outer 2/3rds  are being saved for use in another recipe.)  

Next, rub down each size of the eggplant slices lightly with salt (this will be washed off later, and very little of the salty taste will remain in the finished wrap) and place them in a strainer in the sink.  I just learned that this is called purging, where the salt draws out the bitter taste that is in eggplants, and I found that it made the eggplants much more rollable for wraps.  Allow the salted eggplant slices to purge for about one hour.
During this time you can prepare your ingredients for wrapping by cutting the green onions, tomatoes, and mushrooms.  If desired, water saute the mushrooms in a skillet.

When the eggplant is done purging, under cool water rinse the slices of eggplant, while rubbing them to get as much of the salt off as possible.  Using an outside grill, or a George Forman-like grill, grill each side of the eggplant for 5-8 minutes.  The key is to not undercook the eggplant.  If it doesn't have some burn marks, it's not done.  Eggplant tastes much better when slightly overcooked than if you were to undercook it.
Once the eggplant has been grilled, smear on the hummus, pile on the veggies, and wrap it up.  I found that it held nicely together when I used a toothpick.  Serve with a side salad and enjoy!

Amy's Notes: This is more of a weekend recipe because waiting for the eggplant to purge took a while.  The veggies that I put on my wrap were what sounded good to me, so feel free to put whatever you would like on yours.  Next time I try this I think the combination of garlic hummus, kalamata olves, basil, and some steamed kale, sounds amazing!

Do you have a favorite nutritarian/plant strong eggplant recipe I should try with my 2/3 remaining eggplant not used in this recipe?

4 comments:

  1. I never liked eggplant until recently myself, but have discovered 2 great recipes recently. Thanks for sharing I will try this next, it looks amazing!

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    1. Lisa, I would love to hear what recipes you use for eggplant so maybe I can try them in the future. Thanks for reading!

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  2. I don't do any of that prep and it always tastes great. I just make sure I buy good fresh young eggplant (aka no big seeds in them) and they're never bitter. I just cut and cook. Quick & easy.
    I like dry fried eggplant best when I'm in a rush- just sprinkle it with herbs and chop it up in a salad or if it's cold roast chunks of eggplant with some rosemary/cumin etc. I've got some recipes here http://skinny-vegan-food.blogspot.com.au/p/recipes.html?search_term=eggplant&ui=1112
    The best one I've made recently is definitely the moussaka! If you like the original you'll love my version. Or using grilled/dry fried eggplant as a pasta replacement in a veggie lasagne always goes down well!
    I love eggplant- don't be scared by thinking you have to purge it. I never bother.
    Let us know how you use the rest of it xxx

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    1. Claire, Thanks for the advice on eggplant prep. I'll skip the purging step next time since it's not needed. I've never tried moussaka, but the recipe on your blog looks delicious! I unfortunately did not have a couple of the ingredients needed for that, so maybe I'll try it sometime when I better plan my grocery list. I did use the rest of my eggplant in a curry that I'll post this week. Thanks for reading!

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