Today I want to share with you a simple and delicious way to prepare eggplant, zucchini, and any other healthy vegetables that you love.
Growing up as an Italian American, our culture was infused into our food. However, it wasn't until I visited Italy this year that I experienced eggplant and zucchini prepared in this manner.
Here's how it's done:
1. Heat a grill pan with ridges on medium to high heat.
2. Wash, dry, peel and thinly slice the eggplant into circles. Wash, dry and cut the zucchini into long thin slices.
3. Salt the grill pan and place the vegetables on it. Cook all of the zucchini first and then, the eggplant.
Cook about 3 minutes on each side or until translucent with grill marks.
4. Place a paper towel sheet on a plate and move the cooked pieces onto the plate.
As you fill a sheet with a single layer of vegetables, place another sheet of paper towel and repeat. The paper towel will absorb any extra moisture.
5. As you continue to grill, you may need to adjust the heat lower as the pan gets hotter so that you do not burn the vegetables.
6. When you have cooked all of the zucchini and eggplant, let them sit for a least 30 minutes.
7. Get another plate and move the vegetables to the plate while discarding the paper towel. Here it is ok to partially overlap the vegetables. Now drizzle with extra virgin olive oil and chopped basil.
In Italy, my cousins prepare this in the morning and it sits on the counter until lunch or dinner time. There is no need to refrigerate it.
Here are some different ways to serve these delicious veggies:
- Drizzle with balsamic vinegar
- Add fresh chopped basil, garlic and parsley
- Garnish with some Itri or Gaeta olives
- Serve with fresh tomato and mozzarella or burrata cheese
- Add to your favorite sandwich or panini
- Layer with tomato sauce and cheese and bake
…and ENJOY this simple, healthy and delicious dish!