Friday, June 17, 2016

Roasted Eggplant and Parmesan Crostini

Nicely toasted rye bread topped with some really good stuff. Fantastically delicious, crunchy, beautiful, healthy... How many more definitions you need to convince you to try it? 

Blog's Category: Healthy, Hors D'oeuvre, My Own Fast and Easy, Vegetarian


I'm so happy when I create something really beautiful and delicious. Most what I cook every day is improvisation. Most of those improvisations are pretty delicious. Although it's not that often when I get something extraordinary delicious. That crostini recipe below is my real success indeed.

The recipe is easy. You just need to roast eggplant and pour a little of simple dressing on it. Then you can keep roasted eggplants in a fridge for up to a week and assemble your crostini as many and as often as you need. It is also very convenient make-ahead appetizer for your upcoming entertainment night - just roast your eggplants, slice or grate parmesan and assemble your crostini right before serving. Actually, you can even assemble your crostini in advance and keep them in a fridge, covered with a plastic wrap, up to the moment your guests step in. In this case crostini won't be crunchy, but rather chewy, nevertheless still delicious.

What is it?

It is toasted thin slice of rye bread, spread with a tiny amount of mayonnaise (optional!), topped with a nice piece of roasted eggplant and garnished with a generous amount of sliced parmesan and pink peppercorn.

Taste Description

Classic combination of roasted eggplant and parmesan is taken a whole yard up by pairing with a bold and crunchy toasted rye bread. A little whimp of mayonnaise makes roasted eggplant even better. Small amount of garlic in a dressing gives just a hint of flavor and combines beautifully with a slightly sweet dressing. This subtle sweetness dissipate under saltiness of parmesan, creating nice umami.  Pink peppercorn, as a cherry on top, is not necessary, but highly recommended. It rounds up whole experience with a cheery, fruity notes of total happiness :)

How to Serve

- Serve as appetizer or cut finished crostini into random triangles to serve as a hors d'oeuvres.
- I've got these crostini for a lunch today - with a cup of strong black tea on a side, I would not wish better lunch for myself.

Roasted Eggplant & Parmesan Crostini

  • 5 japanese eggplants, sliced in half
  • 10 thin slices of dense european rye bread, nicely toasted
  • 3 oz parmesan cheese, sliced in a small matchsticks
  • 1 tbs mayonnaise
  • 1 tbs pink peppercorns (optional, but highly recommended)
  • 2 tbs olive oil for roasting
  • some salt and black pepper to taste
  • 1 garlic clove, grated or very finely minced
  • 1 tbs soy sauce
  • 1 tbs kesap sambal (or kesap manis, or hoisin sauce, or teriyaki sauce)
- In a large bowl, mix eggplant halves with olive oil, salt and pepper. Transfer to a baking sheet, cut side up, and roast in a preheated to 420F oven until golden-brown. 

- Meanwhile, make dressing, mixing all dressing ingredients together. 

- Cool cooked eggplant down. Spoon dressing onto warm eggplant halves. 

- Assemble crostini: spread about 1/3 tsp mayo onto each toast. Cut each eggplant half across and place both pieces on a top of crostini. Sprinkle with parmesan and a few pink peppercorns. Serve and enjoy!



I'm saving some time and effort by just mixing eggplant halves with oil, salt and pepper in a large bowl versus meticulously sprinkling each half with oil, salt and pepper. 

Ready to go into oven..

I like my eggplant a bit "well done"... Are you?

I always buy parmesan as a whole piece. It often ends up that I slice it thinly and then it mysteriously disappears from a fridge... 'cause everyone in my family loves thinly sliced parm :) 

Don't even start on "mayonnaise is not good for you.." It's all depends on ingredients, right?

Aren't they smiling to you too?

By the way, it just happened that I used japanese eggplants. I'm sure, plain one can be used too - I'll check on it soon, because, yes, I'll be making these crostini again and again.