Sunday, October 25, 2009

Eggplant Caviar Pizza

I believe we have already talked about eggplant caviar on these pages, briefly, but I think it deserves a little more attention. I have no idea where this sassy condiment came from, but if you are friends with eggplant, then it can work its way into your menu in lots of ways: as a dip, as a spread for sandwiches, as a base for pizza, as a sauce for pasta (with a little added pasta water), or even as a flavor booster for everything from stuffed vegetables to soups to sauces. Just keep it in your fridge and dump a spoonful (or seven) into whatever you've got going.

What you're gonna do is roast some roughly chopped vegetables, then puree them all together. You'll end up with a smooth, paste-like substance that you can stash in the fridge for any future needs. Luckily, when we wanted last-minute pizza for lunch recently, I remembered this pizza-like crust we had made before and the caviar hanging out on my refrigerator shelf. Lunch in 15 minutes. Brilliant.

Eggplant Caviar Pizza
serves 1-2; takes 40 minutes, including roasting of vegetables--much less if your caviar is already made

For the caviar:
1 medium eggplant, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
1 red pepper, stemmed, seeded, and cut into 1-inch pieces
1 medium red onion, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
2 cloves garlic, minced
olive oil, salt, and pepper
2 Tbsp tomato paste
1 Tbsp chopped parsley (opt.)
  • Preheat oven to 425ยบ. Toss vegetables with garlic and plenty of S&P in 1-2 Tbsp of olive oil, enough to coat. Spread on a sheet pan and roast for 20-25 minutes, until the eggplant is soft.
  • Toss roasted veggies into a food processor. Add tomato paste and parsley; process until smooth. Thin with olive oil as needed if it seems too thick. It should be the consistency of a creamy dip.
For pizza:
1/3-1/2 cup eggplant caviar
1/2 cup mozzarella (grated or fresh, sliced)
1/4 cup parmesan, grated
2 Tbsp chopped onion
1 Tbsp fresh parsley
  • Prepare stove and crust according to instructions here. Once you have cooked crust on first side and flipped, spread with eggplant caviar, sprinkle with cheese and toppings, and cover with a lid or foil to finish cooking.

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