I love love love eggplant, but sometimes the consistency overwhelms me. I was, still, intrigued by an eggplant stew from my favourite cookbook, Anatomy of a Dish. It turned out to be surprisingly simple for the pretty complex flavours going on. So far I am seriously in love with this book: it’s gorgeous, builds full, complimentary meals and I’m pretty consistently surprised that things turn out so well, given how simple (read: calls for hardly any ingredients) they are. (Like this chicken, but especially the spinach sauce!) Anyway, this eggplant stew was pretty awesome. The downside is that sometimes stew is ugly. And then I’m stuck debating whether or not to take a picture, and whether or not to even include the picture:
Anyway, this ended up taking a bit of time, but I love multitasking while cooking, so it worked out alright.
- 3 large eggplants
- olive oil
- coarse salt (I love coarse salt!)
- 1 pound sausage (upon checking the recipe, I realize now that I’m pretty sure I doubled this and made it a bit too meaty for my liking… whoops)
- 1 large onion, peeled and diced
- 1/4 cup apple juice (or, white wine if you don’t drink entire bottles…)
- 1/4 cup vermouth
- 8 sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
- 2 cups chicken stock
- 6 cloves roasted garlic
Fill a large tea ball (best purchase ever!) with:
- 3 sprigs thyme
- 1 and 1/2 teaspoons black peppercorns
- 1 tablespoon coriander seeds
First, roast the eggplant. Preheat the over to 425 F, and cut the eggplants length-wise and place them cut side up on a baking sheet. Cut the eggplants in a crisscross, stopping short of the skin. Drizzle the eggplant with olive oil, add salt, and bake for an hour.
While the eggplant is roasting, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large pot. Remove the sausage from it’s casing and cook until it’s browned. Remove the meat and put it aside. Cook the onion in the same pot until it’s softened and browning, then add the juice/wine, vermouth and sundried tomatoes and simmer until everything cooks off.
When the eggplant is ready, scoop the eggplant out of the skin and add it to the onion mixture. Add the soup stock and garlic and let it simmer for about 10 minutes. Use an immersion blender to purée the eggplant and garlic, not completely but to a good consistency, then add the sausage.
Warning: this makes a lot of stew, but it’s pretty excellent.