Small on size, but big on taste29

Posted on May 9, 2008 by ChristieGluten Free, Snacks & Starters, Vegan, Vegetarian

[Roasted baby eggplants with mustard vinaigrette]

[Raw baby eggplants]

UPDATE 01/06/08: This canape has been entered into the Monthly Mingle competition! Which was started by Meeta from the blog What’s for lunch honey? (I love that name!). This month it’s being hosted by Mansi from the blog Fun With Food, so hop on over there and check out all the entries.

I saw these at the vegetable market and I couldn’t resist. I’m a big fan of miniature vegies and especially love the vibrant purple colour of these baby eggplants. It’s such a shame that the colour doesn’t keep when you roast them. Maybe next time I’ll try steaming them to preserve it.

Eggplants are absolutely delicious roasted where the firm flesh becomes soft and the bitter taste mellows to a deeply savoury and smoky flavour. I think they make a wonderful starter served with a sharp mustard vinaigrette and garnished with spring onions or scallions. I like serving the dressing on the side in cute little spoons so that my guests can add it as they go.

Because of the mini size they are also perfect as canapes. Simply serve individually topped with a slice of mozzarella and a fresh basil leaf. Perfecto!

Happy cooking, Christie

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Roasted baby eggplant with mustard vinaigrette
serves 4 as a starter

8 baby eggplants
2 tablespoons olive oil
Sea salt

6 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
Spring onions / Scallions to garnish

Slice the baby eggplants in half length ways and place cut side up in a single layer on a large roasting tray. Sprinkle with the 2 tablespoons of olive oil, season with sea salt and roast for 20-25 minutes until tender. Pierce the centre of one with the tip of a sharp knife to test if it’s done. It should be very soft in the centre with the skin crisped around the edges.

To make the vinaigrette, whisk together all the ingredients until combined.

Serve 4 halves per person on small plates. Scatter over the onions and drizzle with the vinaigrette. Or serve the dressing separately if you like.

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