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Becky Luigart-Stayner Photo by: Becky Luigart-Stayner

Grilled Eggplant Sandwiches with Red Onion and Aioli

For these grilled eggplant sandwiches, use a sliced loaf of good-quality Italian bread; its dense texture stands up to grilling. Red onion and creamy aioli sauce put this flavorful sandwich over the top.

Cooking Light AUGUST 2007

  • Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 1 sandwich)

Ingredients

  • Aioli:
  • 1/4 cup light mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon extravirgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • Sandwiches:
  • 1 (1-pound) eggplant, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh parsley
  • 1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary
  • Cooking spray
  • 4 (1/2-inch-thick) slices red onion
  • 8 (1/2-inch-thick) slices Italian bread
  • 8 (1/4-inch-thick) slices tomato
  • 2 cups lightly packed arugula leaves

Preparation

To prepare aioli, combine the first 4 ingredients in a small bowl, stirring well. Cover and chill.

To prepare sandwiches, arrange eggplant in a single layer on several layers of heavy-duty paper towels. Sprinkle both sides of eggplant with salt; cover with additional paper towels. Let stand 30 minutes, pressing down occasionally. Rinse eggplant with cold water. Drain and pat dry.

Prepare grill.

Combine thyme, parsley, and rosemary in a small bowl, stirring well. Lightly coat eggplant slices with cooking spray; sprinkle with herb mixture.

Arrange eggplant and onion on grill rack coated with cooking spray; grill 2 minutes on each side or until vegetables are tender and lightly browned. Remove from heat, and keep warm. Arrange bread slices in a single layer on grill rack coated with cooking spray, and grill for 1 minute on each side or until toasted.

Spread about 2 teaspoons aioli over 1 side of 4 bread slices; divide eggplant and onion evenly among bread slices. Place 2 tomato slices on each sandwich; top each serving with 1/2 cup arugula. Spread about 2 teaspoons of remaining aioli over 1 side of remaining 4 bread slices; place on top of sandwiches.

Wine note: With vegetables we often think white wine, but grilled eggplant's smoky flavor and pleasantly bitter skin marries well with medium-bodied, rustic reds. Try a Tuscan blend like Tenuta di Arceno PrimaVoce 2003 ($20). The wine's cherry fruit has hints of leather and earth to amplify the herbal flavors of rosemary and thyme, while its vivid acidity balances the creamy aioli. --Jeffery Lindenmuth

Note:

Note: Sprinkle eggplant with salt; let it stand, applying pressure periodically, and rinse before grilling to leach excess moisture and bitterness.

Nutritional Information

Amount per serving
  • Calories: 352
  • Calories from fat: 30%
  • Fat: 11.7g
  • Saturated fat: 1.3g
  • Monounsaturated fat: 5.9g
  • Polyunsaturated fat: 3.6g
  • Protein: 8.2g
  • Carbohydrate: 53.3g
  • Fiber: 7g
  • Cholesterol: 5mg
  • Iron: 2.9mg
  • Sodium: 749mg
  • Calcium: 81mg
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Grilled Eggplant Sandwiches with Red Onion and Aioli recipe

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