Monday, August 09, 2010

Roasted Eggplant party dip

We've been getting so much great produce in our CSA box that at times it seems like we can hardly keep up with the eating. There has been an abundance of squash and eggplant. I think that is a trend for most CSA boxes. Squash has been easier to use up but the eggplant tends to stump me. Our neighborhood tiki party gave me the motivation to make something out of all that eggplant. With just getting back from vacation, the count down to a new CSA box just days away, not wanting to go to the store, and the heat I was eager to use what we had on hand. I wanted to make something that would be fine to sit out for an hour or two and not make anyone sick. This heat really limited my ideas. What I came up with was a bean dip. I always have beans for some reason or another as well as a large bag of chips or crackers. It was the perfect solution. This dip is easy to make and is the perfect party food. We had no problem toting our platter of chips and dip the block away. It fed plenty of people and turned out to be a hit.

Roasted Eggplant party dip

1 1 1/2 pound eggplant, trimmed and cut into cubes
1 small onion, cut into quarters
1 tablespoon seasoned salt
1/4 cup olive oil
1 15 oz. can cannellini or white beans drained and rinsed
1-2 teaspoons minced garlic (depending on your taste)
juice from one lemon, about 3 tablespoons
3 tablespoons chopped fresh flat leaf parsley
2-3 tablespoons olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 450F. Place parchment paper on a rimmed baking sheet. Add the eggplant and onion to a large bowl. Sprinkle the seasoned salt over the vegetables followed by the olive oil. Toss to combine. Spread the vegetables on the prepared baking sheet. Bake 20-25 minutes until golden brown. Allow to cool completely. Add the cooled vegetables, beans, garlic and lemon juice to the bowl of a large food processor. Pulse until the mixture is coarsely chopped. Run the machine and add the oil processing until smooth and creamy. Remove the mixture from the food processor and place in another bowl. Fold in the parsley and season with more salt and pepper to taste. Place your dip in a serving dish and garnish with chopped tomato and some more chopped parsley. Serve with chips, crostini, or crackers.

This is an excellent spread on a tortilla with some lettuce and roasted squash for a quick lunch. It also looks good spread on crostini with some chopped tomato on top. This is vegan so it will work great at a party where there are vegans present.

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