Sunday, August 24, 2008
A Bit of Baking
We had a couple of cooler days Thursday and Friday, so I thought it would be a good idea to heat up the house with some baking. Why in the world would we want to just sit around and feel comfortably cool?
I made blueberry muffins on Thursday, and since we ate almost all of them before the day's end, we made a batch of banana muffins on Friday (complete with chocolate chips, which we later realized made them completely unappealing for Martin). I also made two loaves of bread, so we could enjoy some of those delicious farmer's market and CSA tomatoes we've been getting.
While the oven was on, I roasted up a couple of eggplants and made Barbara Kafka's "Sort of Italian Egglplant Caviar," the only way I like to eat eggplant. I didn't take any photos of the big beautiful purple egglplants before I roasted them, nor did I manage to get a good photo of the beautiful green color it turns when you add in all the basil. It is more akin to pesto than any eggplant dish I know. And I can assure you, it was very tasty. Next time, I'll try to get a photo.
Oh, and here's the recipe, for anyone who might want to try it (or who thinks they don't like eggplant):
2 large eggplants (1 1/4 pounds each)
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1 1/2 cups loosely packed basil leaves
3 to 5 cloves of garlic
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
Roast eggplants at 400 degrees for about 1 1/2 hours. They will sage and possibly burst, look ugly, and be very tender inside.
While eggplants are in the oven, combine all remaining ingredients except parsley in a blender and blend until you have a smooth green cream with no dark spots.
Remove eggplants from oven and using 2 forks, immediately tear each eggplant open. Scrape out the pulp onto the hot baking sheet. Let it sizzle and brown. This will help some of the juice evaporate. If there are still puddles of juice, sponge them up. Discard dry skins.
Put pulp into large bowl. Continue to pull apart until finely shredded*, almost chopped. Thoroughly mix in basil mixture and parsley. Cover and refrigerate for up to 3 days, or until 20 minutes before serving.
*Note: I actually put everything in the food processor and make it more like a spread. Easy and also less evident that it was once eggplant, both of which work for me.