We’ve been getting eggplant pretty regularly in our CSA and I’ve been stumped with coming up with new ideas for cooking with it (that are appealing to me, anyway). Today, our dinner looked very much like bar food… fries with a variety of dips. Only, it was actually pretty healthy and we didn’t feel totally gross after, as I often do when eating lots of fried food.
Eggplant and Zucchini Fries:
(you could do this with one or both vegetables)
1 eggplant, cut into strips
1 zucchini (or 2 tiny ones), cut into strips
Extra virgin olive oil
additional seasonings of your choice (we used Penzey’s 4/S Special Seasoned Sea Salt)
Salt eggplant strips and place in colander over bowl for 10-15 minutes to get some of the liquid out. Rinse very well (otherwise you will end up with way salty eggplant). Place eggplant and zucchini strips in a bowl, drizzle with olive oil. Toss to coat.
In a shallow dish, stir together bread crumbs and additional seasonings. Coat strips and place on parchment lined baking sheets. Bake at 400* for 20-25 minutes.
The vegetables themselves don’t get very crunchy, but more like sweet and nutty from the roasting. The breadcrumbs add a nice crunch, though.
Okra Oven Fries
seasoned salt (we used 4/S again)
Toss whole okra in oil and rub on seasoned salt. Bake on parchment lined baking sheets in oven at 400* for 20 minutes. (We just threw ours right on there with the eggplant and zucchini.)
I made two dips to go along with our “fries.” (We dipped in some Dinosaur Barbecue sauce as well.)
1/4 cup nonfat Greek yogurt (I’m a fan of Trader Joe’s brand)
1/2 teaspoon curry powder
1/2 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoons grated onion or shallot
1/2 teaspoon red curry paste
Sriracha Dipping Sauce:
1/4 cup nonfat Greek yogurt
Sriracha sauce to taste (about 1/2 – 1 tsp.)
2 T fresh-squeezed lime juice
For both dips, mix all ingredients in bowl until well combined. Chill if you have time, or serve right away.
This dinner was super fun to eat. We just piled all the “fries” onto a platter, used sandwich sized plates and dipped straight into the bowls at the dinner table. Both of the dips were really yummy and would work well with crudite, chips or crackers.