Grilled Eggplant, Red Pepper and Tomato Sandwiches
Makes 4 sandwiches
This is an excellent Italian-inspired recipe and a delicious vegetarian alternative to grilled meat sandwiches. I love it. Although I usually grill the vegetables using a grill pan, they can be made on an outdoor grill or under the broiler. The recipe can be made in any amount needed.
- About 12 ounces eggplant, cut into 1/4-inch thick slices
- 1 large red pepper, cut in half, stem, core and seeds removed, then cut into strips
- 1 tablespoon dried oregano
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 large tomato, halved, seeds removed and sliced
- 6 cloves garlic, peeled
- 1 tablespoon freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- Crusty rolls or thickly sliced rustic bread
- Sliced mozzarella cheese
Place eggplant and pepper slices in a large bowl. Season with the oregano, salt, pepper and olive oil. Toss to combine. Let set about 5 minutes. Meanwhile, place the tomato slices on paper towels. Sprinkle with salt. Top with another towel and pat dry. Heat a grill pan over medium-high heat. Add the eggplant slices and grill until tender and browned, about 5 minutes per side. Transfer to a bowl. Grill the peppers and garlic until browned and softened, about 10 minutes, being very careful to remove the garlic before it burns. Cut the grilled peppers into thin slices. Mince the garlic. Add both to the eggplant. Sprinkle the tomatoes with a little oregano, pepper and a drizzle of olive oil. Grill just until browned on both sides. Add to the eggplant mixture. Add the Parmesan cheese; toss well to combine and taste for seasoning. Heat or toast the bread as desired. Place eggplant mixture on one half or slice. Top with sliced mozzarella. If desired, place under the broiler until the cheese melts. Top with the remaining bread. Serve immediately.
Notes: If grilling outside, keep the peppers in large enough pieces so they do not fall through the grate and wrap the garlic in foil. This is equally good leftover as is or in more sandwiches. Store in the refrigerator up to several days and bring to room temperature before serving.