Eggplants are a heavenly ingredient, a mainstay of the healthy Mediterranean diet and a staple of Middle Eastern cuisine.
For a light dish in which you can really taste the essence of eggplants, we simply roast them in olive oil and combine them with arugula, a tahini dressing and one of our favorite ingredients: sweet-sharp pomegranate molasses. It’s a recipe that impresses in any setting.
Roasted Eggplants With Tahini and Pomegranate Molasses Dressing
2 large eggplants
Large bunch of arugula (about 2 cups), torn and destemmed
2 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and pepper
For the Tahini Dressing
4 tablespoons tahini paste
2 garlic cloves, minced
Juice of 1 large lime
½ teaspoon ground coriander
¼ teaspoon ground cumin
Salt and pepper
For the Garnish
Handful pomegranate seeds
2 tablespoons pomegranate molasses
2 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted (optional)
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius (350 degrees Fahrenheit). Line an oven tray with baking parchment.
Slice the eggplants into thin rounds, brush them lightly on both sides with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil and lay them carefully next to each other in one layer on the oven tray. Place in the middle of the oven for 30 minutes until fully cooked, turning halfway through.
While the eggplant slices roast, put all the ingredients for the dressing along with about 4¼ cups of lukewarm water into a medium bowl and mix to combine. If the dressing is too thick for your liking, you can mix in a little more water.
When the eggplants cool, arrange them next to each other on a plate, drizzle with the tahini mix and then lay the arugula leaves on top. Season with salt and pepper, drizzle olive oil and pomegranate molasses. You can garnish with a handful of fresh pomegranate seeds and toasted pine nuts.
Reprinted with permission from
Bilhana: Wholefood Recipes From Egypt, Lebanon, and Morocco
Yasmine Elgharably and Sheweker Elgharably.
AUC Press, 2021.
Yasmine Elgharably is a self-taught home cook with a business background and a passion for Middle Eastern food. She is a cofounder of cairocooking.com, a recipe-sharing platform helping cooks across the Middle East. She is also based in Cairo.
Sheweker Elgharably is a certified holistic health coach and culinary nutrition expert based in Cairo, Egypt. She completed the Integrative Nutrition Program and the Culinary Nutritional Program at the US-based Academy of Culinary Nutrition. Originally an established interior designer, after seeing how small food and lifestyle changes have a huge impact on health, she wanted to help people strive to live healthier and happier lives. Shewekar is also the founder of #HealthyRocks.