Roasted Eggplant and Sweet Potatoes Topped with Fried Egg and Saffron Yogurt

Remember when Paulina was telling you about our cross-country burning desire for eggplant? This was the dish that I wanted to make, but it required so many things that I could not easily get, Santa Cruz being the land of all things Seasonal and Right. Eggplants? Not at Staff of Life. There was a sign, but no eggplant. Basil? Hahaha. Silly girl. Basil’s for summertime. It’s at Trader Joe’s but at a certain point you’ve ignored the recipe to such a degree that it requires dissolving any notion of following it to its particular, finicky end. I went to like, four different stores. I don’t know why this was so hard. Saffron is expensive and subtle in that way that makes you wonder why you’re not sophisticated and good God, why does marjoram smell like lemon Pine-Sol when you throw it on top of cooking onions?

And with this I present you: Roasted Eggplant and Sweet Potatoes Topped with Fried Egg and Saffron Yogurt. It’s kind of based off of this recipe.

  • 1 eggplant, cut in 1-inch cubes
  • 1 medium sweet potato
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt, plus extra
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon saffron
  • 2 tablespoons hot water
  • 1/2 cup Greek yogurt (I don’t recommend 0%. It tasted like Laurel’s Diet Kitchen up in here).
  • Freshly cracked black pepper
  • Parsley, so things don’t look like a homogeneous blob at the end

Procedures

  1. In a large colander, toss the eggplant with the salt. Allow to drain over the sink for 30 minutes. Do not rinse. Preheat the broiler.

  2. Toss the eggplant with the olive oil on a Silpat- or parchment-lined rimmed baking sheet. Arrange the eggplant & sweet potatoes  in a single layer, close together, on the baking sheet. Broil in the top third of the oven, but not directly under the broiler, stirring 3 times, until the eggplant is soft and just beginning to char, 25 to 30 minutes. Set aside to cool.

  3. While the eggplant & sweet potatoes roast, combine the saffron and hot water in a small bowl, and allow to steep. Once the eggplant is cool, blend together the saffron, its water, and the yogurt in a small food processor. Season with salt and pepper. I wish I could tell you that you didn’t need to put this in a food processor or blender, but it’s the only way you’re going to get that creamy yellow Hollandaise color.

  4. Fry up an egg. Or don’t! I have to have protein with my meals, or else… (ominous music) to be honest, maybe the egg was a weird addition and you may be better off with some other form of protein on the side.
  5. Arrange the eggplant and sweet potatoes in a single layer on a wide platter. Top with the fried egg, saffron yogurt sauce. Does not taste good the next day, trust me on this. 

With love,

Nellie

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