I couldn’t have let this summer go by without dedicating at least one post to this tasty produce: the eggplant.
And I’ve been waiting until now. The first eggplants are finally growing in my parents’ garden. They look beautiful!Especially the round-shaped ones that are very common in Southern Italy. This is the first time that my parents planted those, and so far it’s been worth it!
When you look at all the fresh produce, it makes us realize how blessed we actually are. It is tempting to take all that for granted. But if you think about it, it makes us appreciate it everything even more. I particularly enjoyed the fact to be able to decide right there and then what to eat. “Shall I make fried zucchini blossoms?” asked my mom while she was cooking in the garden’s kitchen. My dad hurried and picked enough for the four of us. “Can you also pick parsley for the batter? Oh, and lettuce, cucumbers and tomatoes for the salad?” she added. What else can you ask for, right? I wish my husband and I had our own garden that we could enjoy daily. In the meantime we’ll keep benefiting from our balcony and the Saturday farmer’s market :)
Being spoiled with perfect looking produce from the grocery stores, where everything sparkles and doesn’t even have one spot on it..back in the days I’d have never thought that I would be so thrilled to find all kind of insects in a lettuce! Happy to see life. Instead of wondering how many pesticides have been used to keep any kind of living creature away.
The eggplants that you can see on the following picture are purely organic. And tasty! Mixed with buffalo mozzarella and homemade mint pesto you can create a quick and delicious summer dish! If you prefer basil to mint, you can also replace it with this basil olive oil. Either way, this recipe is a must for all eggplant lovers out there!
- 1 small eggplant
- 1 buffalo mozzarella
- 1 handful of fresh mint sprigs
- 1 tbsp of pine nuts, toasted
- (extra-virgin) olive oil
- Cut the eggplant into 1cm / ½" thick slices.
- Brush both sides with olive oil and sprinkle with salt.
- Place the slices on the hot grill (alternatively pan or baking pan) until they get a nice brown color on both sides.
- In the meantime prepare the mint pesto by washing and chopping the mint leaves (you can also use a blender for a more creamy result).
- Stir in the previously toasted and chopped pine nuts. (You can toast them in a pan, with no grease for a few minutes at medium-high heat).
- Add olive oil as needed until all the mint is completely covered.
- Cut the mozzarella into slices as thick as the eggplant.
- As soon as the eggplant is done make layers alternating with the mozzarella.
- Pour the mint pesto either in between of the layers or only on the very top slice, as you prefer.
- Leftover mint pesto goes also perfectly well with BBQ meat, other grilled vegetables, or as a spread on sandwiches.