Ever wonder what to do with those long purple eggplants you see at the store or farmers market? First we tried juggling but that didn’t work so we put them to the heat of the moment and under the knife and here’s what we came up with.
Chinese eggplant grilled and infused with hot smoke to coax out and develop a delicate texture. Yes please! Next, we add soft silky creamy Kite Hill yogurt and a deep earthy red toned caramel to paint the crime scene.
SERVES | 4 -6
TIME | 45 minutes
4 purple eggplants or Chinese eggplant loins (approximately 8 -12” long each)
1/4 C hazelnuts, karate chopped (means rough chop – ninja talk)
2 T Kite Hill Plain yogurt or other non-dairy yogurt
2 T Salted Beet Blood (see notes below in options)
1 tsp sesame oil
1/2 tsp coarse salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp Chinese Five-Spice Powder
a sprig of mint, basil and cilantro, to garnish
small handful of apple wood smoked chips for the grill
For a quick and easy beet blood try mixing 1/4 cup of warm coconut nectar with a few tablespoons of beet juice and a pinch of salt, or just straight brown rice syrup mixed with a little Ninja Sriracha works wonders too. Add any type of hot pepper or Ninja Squirrel Sriracha for that added hotness!
1. Fire up your charcoal grill to hot and glowing embers.
2. Rub sesame oil between your hands like a massage therapist, rub those eggplants all over, to coat. Season with the salt, pepper and five spice and let sit about 5 – 10 minutes.
3. Place eggplant loins on the grill and grill for 5 minutes on one side then turn eggplants and toss a few applewood chips onto the flame to heat and add smoke, cover the cover and cook for 5 minutes on each side depending on the heat of the grill. I find these cook up pretty quick with 10-15 minutes depending on the heat of the grill. You can tell when they are done by a slight dimpling and color change and the loins will become soft and easy to pierce through with a skewer.
4. Remove from the heat and let sit for a minute before carving.
5. Slice into 1-inch thick slices on an angle. Place on platter to begin your art project. First drizzle with a little yogurt, then the salted beet blood … now you’re an artist!
6. Top with chopped ninja nuts and garnish with fresh herbs.