Photo: Johnny Autry; Styling: Cindy Barr
Hands-on Time
20 Mins
Total Time
50 Mins
Serves 4 (serving size: 1 topped eggplant half)

Eggplant is a staple in the Middle East, and they sure do know how to cook it. It's stellar: smoky and light and not at all bitter. The trick is to cook it whole over a gas stovetop burner or on a hot grill. The outside gets all charred as the inside steams, gathering a nice smoky overtone and becoming perfectly cooked. Toasted pecans and pickled jalapeños infuse some Southern accents into the traditional dish. If you can't find pomegranate arils (they come already "shucked" in the produce section), just omit them, or drizzle on a wee bit of pomegranate molasses.

How to Make It

Step 1

Combine first 3 ingredients in a small saucepan; bring to a boil. Remove from heat, and add jalapeño; let stand 15 minutes. Drain.

Step 2

Preheat grill to medium-high heat.

Step 3

Place whole eggplants on grill rack; grill 15 minutes or until charred on all sides and tender when pierced with a thin knife, turning frequently. Remove from heat; gently scrape off charred skin, if desired. Cool eggplants slightly; halve lengthwise. Lightly score flesh.

Step 4

Combine yogurt, tahini, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and garlic, stirring well. Drizzle 4 teaspoons oil and lemon juice over eggplant flesh; top with yogurt mixture.

Step 5

Combine arugula, remaining 2 teaspoons olive oil, and remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt in a medium bowl; toss gently. Top each eggplant half with about 1/2 cup arugula, 5 jalapeño slices, 1 tablespoon pomegranate arils, and 1 tablespoon pecans.

Ratings & Reviews

OK but there are better eggplant, yogurt and pomegranate recipes out there. Does not look like the photo if cooked on the grill

September 17, 2015
Followed directions exactly.  Skin was charred and removed leaving a glob of eggplant.  Well, OK. It gets covered by all the other stuff so it wouldn't look like the picture which was clearly not done on a grill but in an oven.  The tahini added a bit too much, confusing the multiple flavors.  One of the three eating it liked it.  The pecans were a nice touch.  Not sure why the jalapeños were cooked in the vinegar/sugar mix.  It did not seem to affect the flavor of them.  Perhaps it was to soften the texture.  Bottom line...won't be making this again. 

pogomiss's Review

November 06, 2014

RachelDunn's Review

September 01, 2013

KatieU's Review

August 08, 2013