Take advantage of the mild weather (relatively speaking) that Oklahoma has been having thus far this summer and fire up those grills!
As part of his new grilling video series, Chef Symon shares a fantastic recipe that will coerce when the pickiest of eaters to eat those veggies. Reminiscent of a traditional Caprese Salad, but with a twist, this grilled version adds eggplant and panko breadcrumbs as extra layers of texture and flavor.
In case you’re not familiar with them, panko breadcrumbs are Japanese and are light, airy and add great crunch to breading and toppings. They are readily available and can be found in most supermarkets on the International aisle or near the store’s sushi counter, if it has one.
Grilled Eggplant with Mozzarella
- 5 T olive oil + more for the breadcrumbs
- 3T panko breadcrumbs
- 1-2 T balsamic vinegar
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1 medium eggplant, sliced into ½” thick pieces
- 8 oz. fresh mozzarella, sliced into ¼” pieces
- ½ c basil, torn or finely sliced
- 2T chives, finely sliced|
- ½# fresh tomatoes, sliced into ¼” pieces
Place a small sauté pan over medium high heat. When the pan is hot add a drizzle of olive oil followed by the breadcrumbs. Toast, stirring occasionally until the breadcrumbs turn golden brown then season them with some salt. Remove from the heat and pour in to a small bowl. Mix in the chives and set aside.
Begin by heating your grill to medium high. While the grill is heating up, lay out the eggplant, tomato and mozzarella on a large plate or sheet tray. Season everything with salt and freshly ground black pepper and drizzle it with 4 T of olive oil.
Place the eggplant on the grill for 2 minutes per side with the lid down until it’s nicely grill marked. After 4 minutes, top each piece of eggplant with a slice of tomato and a slice of mozzarella. Put the lid back down for 1 more minute, until the mozzarella is melted. Remove to a platter and drizzle with the balsamic and 1 T of olive oil. Top with fresh basil and toasted breadcrumbs and enjoy!