I wouldn’t describe myself as a “sandwich person” per se, but once in a blue moon, I’ll have a sandwich that *almost* converts me. (Sorry bread, but noodles will always be my #1 carb of choice.) Last night was one of those experiences — TC found a recipe for Grilled Eggplant and Heirloom Tomato Sandwiches from our CSA’s website. We decided to give it a try, even though we didn’t have a grill. As it turns out, you can also broil eggplant and peppers — hot AND fast!
This recipe did not disappoint! Both TC and I were blown away by how delicious this combination was. On top of the basic recipe, we added coarsely chopped basil (since that was also in our CSA box) and fresh mozzarella. Another key ingredient: good bread. We chose an Acme ciabatta, which was perfect. One happy coincidence was an open bottle of Yellowtail Shiraz, which paired really well with the sandwich.
Not only does this sandwich include the best of summer produce, but it’s also quick and easy — the last thing you want to be doing during the summer is slaving away over the stove, am I right? Anyway, enough talking – here’s the recipe.
Grilled Eggplant and Heirloom Tomato Sandwiches
(adapted from Full Belly Farms)
1 eggplant cut into 1/4-inch slices – This will work fine with any type of eggplant.
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 peppers, roasted or grilled and sliced
1 or 2 heirloom tomatoes, sliced
– Aioli or mayonnaise to spread on the bread
– fresh mozzarella, sliced
– basil, coarsely chopped
1. Preheat the grill or broiler. Brush the olive oil lightly over both sides of the eggplant and sprinkle with salt. Grill or broil the eggplant until tender, 3 or 4 minutes per side. Place in a bowl and toss with 1 tablespoon of vinegar and half of the minced garlic.
2. Cut the tops off the peppers, slice in half lengthwise and remove the seeds. Grill or broil the peppers until tender (about 9 minutes in broiler) and then toss them in a bowl with the remaining vinegar, garlic, and basil (if using).
3. Grill, broil or toast the bread. If you are using aioli or mayonnaise spread it on the bread and then assemble the sandwiches with layers of eggplant, peppers, tomatoes, and mozzarella (if using).