If you thought zoodles were good, wait until you give eggplant “noodles” a go. Swapping pappardelle pasta for long ribbons of eggplant makes for a stunning and flavor-packed, veggie-forward entree you’ll love to serve to guests. The key is to make sure you do not overcook the eggplant, as it should be tender, but still have some body to it. To do this, be sure to get the oil hot before adding your eggplant, and cook the eggplant undisturbed to promote browning. Turning the heat off when stirring in the pesto keeps the eggplant from burning. This dish is not ideal for reheating, so aim to eat what you make. However, on its own, the scrumptious pesto sauce is worth doubling to have leftovers you can use throughout the week.
4 (8-oz.) Chinese eggplants
2 cups chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley (about 1 medium bunch)
1 large garlic clove, crushed
1 teaspoon lemon zest plus 2 Tbsp. fresh juice (from 1 lemon)
3/4 cup chopped walnuts (about 3 oz.), toasted, divided
Using a vegetable peeler, cut eggplants lengthwise into strips. (Do not use centers of eggplants with seeds.) Arrange eggplant strips on a baking sheet lined with paper towels. Top with a layer of paper towels and a second baking sheet. Let stand 10 minutes. Divide eggplant strips evenly into 4 piles.
Combine parsley, garlic, zest, juice, and 1/2 cup each of the walnuts and Parmesan in a blender. Process on low speed until mixture is roughly chopped, stopping to scrape down sides as necessary. With blender running, slowly drizzle in 1 cup of the oil through food chute, and process until mixture is well blended and no chunks remain, about 1 minute. Stir in pepper and 1/2 teaspoon of the salt.
Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large nonstick skillet over high. When oil is shimmering and nearly smoking, add 1 pile of eggplant strips; cook, without stirring, until lightly browned on bottom, 30 seconds to 1 minute. Stir with tongs to redistribute, and cook, without stirring, 30 seconds. Remove from heat, and stir in 1/4 cup of the parsley pesto. Transfer to a bowl, and wipe skillet clean. Repeat procedure 3 times with remaining 3 tablespoons oil, 3 piles of eggplant strips, 3/4 cup of the parsley pesto, and 3 bowls.
Sprinkle each serving with 1 tablespoon each of the Parmesan and walnuts. Serve with additional parsley pesto.
You May Like
Sign Up for our Newsletter
Join our newsletter for free recipes, healthy living inspiration, and special offers.