Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Roasted Eggplant Spread

This recipe comes from one of my all-time favorite cookbooks, The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook. I have been making this dish for years and it never gets old. The eggplant, red pepper and red onion complement one another perfectly.

The best thing about this dish is its versatility. It is great served on crackers as an appetizer for a party or cocktail hour, but it is also amazing in sandwiches and on pasta. It's a nice spread to keep in the fridge for whenever you want to spice up a boring sandwich or have a light mid afternoon snack.

Not only is this spread tasty, it's super simple and healthy. It also keeps well in the fridge. What more could you ask for?

Bon appetit!

Roasted Eggplant Spread
Serves 6-8
1 medium eggplant
2 red bell peppers, seeded
1 red onion, peeled
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 tbsp good olive oil
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 tbsp tomato paste

Preheat oven to 400° F. Cut eggplant, red peppers and onion into 1-inch cubes. Toss in a large bowl with garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper. Spread on a baking sheet lined with foil. Roast the vegetables for 45 minutes, until they are lightly browned and soft, tossing once during cooking.

Chopping the veggies uniformly ensures they cook evenly

Cool vegetables slightly. Pulse in a food processor fitted with a steel blade until vegetables reach your desired size (I like my spread a little chunky, but some prefer a smoother consistency). Add the tomato paste and pulse 3-4 times to blend. Add salt and pepper to taste.

This spread is great on crackers, sandwiches and pasta

Source: The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook

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