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Mains, Vegetables, Vegetarian

Eggplant stuffed with kale and walnuts

Eggplant stuffed with kale and walnuts
Gary Friedman / Los Angeles Times

END-OF-SUMMER vegetables, multicolored and burnished by the slowing heat of an accomplished season, have transformed the market stalls and produce aisles into Renaissance still life paintings. But eventually, glorious heirloom tomatoes and lavender Chinese eggplants need to make the transition ... Read more

Total time: 50 minutes, plus 1 hour resting time | Serves 4
  • 4 Chinese eggplants
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 shallots, minced
  • 4 cups chopped black kale (lacinto) shallots, minced
  • 2 tablespoons pomegranate molasses
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 cup toasted walnuts, chopped

Step 1Quarter the eggplants lengthwise, keeping the stem end intact. Carve out about one-half inch lengthwise along the inside of each quarter, leaving one-quarter inch of flesh intact. Chop the eggplant pieces that you've removed and sprinkle them and the interiors of the whole eggplants with the salt. Let sit 15 to 20 minutes.

Step 2In a large saute pan, heat two tablespoons olive oil over low heat. Add the garlic, shallots and kale and saute until fragrant and wilted, about 5 minutes. Squeeze out the water from the chopped eggplant and add it to the saute pan along with the pomegranate molasses and cumin; continue to cook for another 5 minutes. Add the walnuts; remove from the heat.

Step 3Pat the eggplants dry and fill the cavities with the stuffing; reassemble the quarters and tie with kitchen twine. In a large saute pan, heat the remaining olive oil, add the tied eggplants and saute on all sides until golden.

Step 4Add one-half cup water, cover the pan tightly and remove from the heat. Let sit, covered, for an hour.

Step 5After an hour, remove the eggplants from the pan, untie and serve, either sliced or whole.


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