Summer is probably my least favorite season- I don't handle the heat very well. But if we could do this 4 times a week, I think I could be a very happy girl...
Grilled Eggplant Sandwiches
Good bread (we use 'Country French Bread' from the Harmon's bakery)
Tomatoes (real ones from your garden- they have to be good!)
Arugula or other bitter greens
Aioli (recipe follows)
Fresh herbs, minced (basil, rosemary, parsley, oregano or anything you happen to have)
good olive oil, for drizzling
fresh mozzarella (optional)
Slice eggplant into 1/2" rounds. Salt them and set them on paper towels for an hour or so to draw out some of the liquid.
Grill red onions until soft-ish. Grill eggplant until tender. Grill bread slices.
Assemble sandwiches- generously slather bread with aioli, layer eggplant, onions, tomatoes, herbs, mozzarella (if using), and arugula. Drizzle with olive oil and add top piece of bread. Enjoy thoroughly!
2/3 cup olive oil
1/2 cup peanut or canola oil
4 large garlic cloves, minced
2 egg yolks
4 tsp. lemon juice
Mix both oils together in a bowl with a spout.
Put garlic, egg yolks, and lemon juice in a food processor and pulse until it's fairly smooth
With the machine running, add the oil in a very slow, thin, steady stream. The mixture should be the consistency of mayonnaise (as that's exactly what we're making). Season with salt to taste. Cover and refrigerate for at least an hour to let the flavors meld.
Spicy Sweet Potato Fries
1 teaspoon coriander seeds
1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon dried hot red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon kosher salt
2 lbs sweet potatoes
Grind all spices together with a mortar and pestle or an electric spice grinder.
Scrub sweet potatoes and slice into fry size pieces.
Toss potatoes with olive oil and spice mixture.
Roast at 425 for 20 minutes then turn them over and keep cooking until they are as crisp as you'd like, (but be warned that they will never be totally crisp- they have a lot more moisture than regular fries).
If you don't want spicy fries, just toss potatoes with olive oil and salt and roast.
These are awesome dipped in the aioli!
This meal is best enjoyed on a warm summer evening with the people you love the most.