Since I was going to turn on the outdoor grill anyway (was grilling a bunch of vegetables to make a vegetable lasagna), I went ahead and grilled the eggplant slices as well. But if you are cooking the eggplant on the outdoor grill, you may need to watch the eggplant carefully so it doesn't dry out too much.. or lower the heat if need be. In his book, Gordon Ramsay uses a grill pan, or a griddle. Using a grill pan just gives you a bit more control over the heat, versus the outdoor grill.
But you know, I really enjoyed the dish... and loved the dressing. Something new and different. It's a great appetizer or side dish for the summer months. A dish that can be made a day ahead and then brought to room temperature( or even warmed up a bit)... the dressing can be added right before serving. If you don't care for the eggplant, try making only the sesame dressing... and then using the dressing with grilled meats. The honey is there for an added bit of sweetness, but if you don't care to add it, feel free to omit it. Really, just go by taste. Oh, and the zaatar seasoning, well, it was just a last minute personal addition.... been loving the spice and have been using it on anything I can:). Hope you enjoy...
Tip: Because the dressing is great on grilled meats as well... make a larger batch.
You will need: adapted from Gordon Ramsay's Fast Food
1 large eggplant
olive oil, to brush and drizzle
sea salt and black pepper
few rosemary sprigs, plus extra for garnish
juice of 1/2 lemon, or to taste
Sesame Yoghurt Dressing: adjust tahini and yoghurt to taste ... the recipe makes a smallish amount, so you may need to double it if you want extra dressing.
1 TBS tahini(sesame seed paste)
2 TBS plain Yoghurt(I used a thick Greek yoghurt)
1 TBS lemon juice
1 tsp honey
1 garlic clove, crushed
Additional: totally optional, but I like it.
1-2 tsps zaatar seasoning
1. Wash eggplant trim ends, and cut eggplant in 1/2 inch thick slices. Brush (or drizzle) eggplant slices on both sides with olive oil( Gordon Ramsay suggests you drizzle the oil generously( I was cautious:)). Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Toss with a few sprigs of rosemary leaves... or sprinkle a few dried rosemary leaves(what I ended up doing) .
2. Heat a griddle/grill pan... or use the outdoor grill, or even the oven broiler. Grill the eggplants for 4-5 minutes on each side or until cooked.... the oven might take a bit longer.
3. Place grilled eggplant slices in a bowl and while still warm add a bit more olive oil with some lemon juice. Toss well to coat and set aside.
1. Mix all ingredients in a bowl until smooth. Stir in 1-3 TBS of hot water to thin it out... you want it to be the consistency of whipping cream. Depending on how thin your yoghurt is, you may use less or more of the hot water.
2. Season to taste with salt and pepper.... and adjust other ingredients as well, if you like.
1. Place the grilled eggplant on a plate. Drizzle the dressing over the slices and garnish with e few extra rosemary leaves... and sprinkle a bit of the zaatar seasoning all over (optional... my personal addition, because I'm loving the spice:) ).
2. Serve with warm flatbread.