So last week I wrote that it wasn't quite tomato season yet. Well, it is now! Here's something to use up some of those beautiful tomatoes and eggplants we're seeing all over the gardens and farmer's markets now.
This is a twist on the traditional summertime eggplant-zucchini ratatouille (the French version) or caponata (the Italian version). I got the inspiration from Mark Bittman's How to Cook Everything Vegetarian. (Many of you might recognize him from his New York Times articles about food or even from Runner's World magazine bits about fitness nutrition.)
Sweet Eggplant-Zucchini Salad
All the veggies in this recipe came from Redbud Farm (at the Elon farmer's market) except the jalapeno and the mint, which came from my very own garden!
1 eggplant, chopped into 1" pieces (rosa bianca eggplant is shown in the picture)
1 yellow zucchini, chopped (not a squash)
1 green zucchini, chopped
1 small onion, coarsely chopped
1 jalapeno or other hot pepper, minced very fine
2 tomatoes, chopped (I had extra cherry tomatoes too so I added those)
1 handful of mint leaves, minced
Ingredients from the pantry:
3 TB olive oil, divided
1 tsp cinnamon
1 TB lemon juice
salt and pepper
1. Heat 2T olive oil over medium heat in a stainless steel skillet. Add the eggplant and sprinkle some salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes or until eggplant is soft. Remove eggplant from pan into bowl.
2. Add zucchini to hot pan with 1T olive oil. Cook for 2 minutes, then add onion and jalapeno. Cook for a few minutes until onions begin to get soft. Add 1 teaspoon cinnamon.
3. Add the tomatoes. Simmer for a few minutes to blend the flavors. Add some salt and pepper and the lemon juice. When everything looks good, add the eggplant back in. Toss in the mint leaves and stir to mix everything. Make sure all the pieces are nice and soft, and that the flavors are mixed throughout.
4. Serve over small toasts (toasted baguette, sliced) or with fresh mozzarella pieces.