August 21, 2011 by Johanna Burani
According to some sources, Italians have been cooking with eggplants since the 14th Century. I know that it has been on our family’s table and those of every one of my relatives’ tables for my entire life, which, alas, now spans many decades! This versatile fruit vegetable can be roasted, grilled, stuffed, pureed or, as in this recipe, sauteed and marinated. Eggplants are also versatile in another way: they are considered to have diuretic, sedative and laxative properties. Feel free to cut back on the amount of oil.
- 1.5 lbs. eggplant (common or Western types), cut into ¼ inch horizontal slices
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- ½ cup (8 tablespoons) olive oil, divided
- 2 tablespoons capers, drained, rinsed, chopped
- 1-2 cloves garlic, minced
- 4 ounces large green olives, pitted, coarsely chopped
- 15 fresh mint leaves, chopped
- salt/pepper to taste
- Sprinkle salt on the eggplant slices, place them in a colander and let drain for 30 minutes. Rinse and pat dry. Brush 4 tablespoons of olive oil on both slides of each slice, place on a tray or plate and set aside.
- Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Add 4-5 eggplant slices at a time and cook until browned on both sides. When done, place each slice in an overlapping fashion in a shallow ceramic serving tray. Continue until all slices are cooked. Set aside.
- In a small bowl add 2 tablespoons of olive oil and the next 4 ingredients (capers through mint). Season with salt and pepper.
- Transfer the dressing evenly over the layered eggplant slices and drizzle the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil over them. Cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours before serving.