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Eggplant Salad with Cumin and Fresh Herbs
© Quentin Bacon

Eggplant Salad with Cumin and Fresh Herbs

  • ACTIVE: 40 MIN

As Nadia Roden was growing up, her mother prepared eggplants in so many ways—frying them, roasting them, stuffing them. This salad is one of Nadia's favorites.

  1. Two 1-pound eggplants
  2. 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  3. 1 1/2 pounds plum tomatoes, peeled and coarsely chopped
  4. 4 garlic cloves, chopped
  5. Salt
  6. 1/4 cup coarsely chopped flat-leaf parsley
  7. 1/4 cup coarsely chopped cilantro
  8. 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  9. 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  10. 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
  11. Pinch of cayenne pepper
  12. Assorted olives, for garnish
  1. Preheat the oven to 500°. Put the eggplants on a large rimmed baking sheet and prick them in a few places with a knife. Bake in the upper third of the oven for about 1 hour, or until blackened and soft. Scoop the flesh out of the skins, discard most of the seeds and finely chop the flesh. Drain in a colander, pressing lightly to extract as much moisture as possible.
  2. Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a medium skillet. Add the tomatoes, garlic and a pinch of salt. Cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until thick and saucy, about 15 minutes.
  3. In a large bowl, combine the eggplants, tomato sauce, parsley, cilantro, lemon juice, cumin, paprika and cayenne and season with salt. Spread the eggplant salad on a large serving plate. Scatter the olives on top and serve.
Make Ahead The salad can be refrigerated overnight. Bring to room temperature before serving.