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Grilled Eggplant Burgers with Spicy Garlic Spread
From the blog: Grab A Plate | Written by: Patricia | August 27, 2012
- 1 small eggplant, sliced into 4 or 5, 1/2-inch-thick rounds
- 1 large tomato, cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices (one slice for each burger)
- 1 large white onion, cut into 1/4-inch-thick rounds (one round for each burger)
- 6 ounces mozzarella cheese, cut into thin slices (one slice for each burger)
- 4-5 slices of crusty Italian-style bread (one slice for each burger)
- 1-1/2 teaspoons fresh basil, ribbon cut
- 4 tablespoons mayonnaise
- 1-1/2 teaspoons garlic chili paste (use your favorite hot sauce combined with one mashed garlic clove if you don’t have garlic chili paste)
- 3-4 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 teaspoons salt, divided
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- After slicing the eggplant, lay them on paper towels and sprinkle them with salt. This will help draw out the bitter juices from the eggplant. Allow them to sit for about 30 minutes.
- Consider using long toothpicks that have been soaked in water for 15-20 minutes, or thin metal skewers, to hold the onion rounds together for grilling. Brush the onions with a bit of the olive oil.
- Combine the mayonnaise and the garlic chili paste, mix well and refrigerate until ready to use.
- Heat your grill to medium heat. When the eggplant rounds are ready, brush them with a bit of the olive oil, sprinkle with ground black pepper and grill them for about 15 minutes, or until soft, turning them often so they don’t burn.
- About halfway through grilling the eggplant, add the onions to the grill. Flip them so they do not burn, but so they still achieve grill marks.
- When the eggplant is cooked, move them from the grill flame and add the slices of cheese to each, just so it melts. Place the slices of Italian bread on the grill. Flip the bread so it doesn’t burn, but keep them on the grill just for a few minutes. Remove the eggplant, onions and bread and place on a baking sheet. Cover with foil.
- Spread about 1 tablespoon of the mayonnaise mixture over each slice of bread and top with an eggplant slice.
- Next add the tomato slice, then the onion rounds. Sprinkle with the basil and serve with a fork and knife.
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