My first official recipe post. Wow, this is kind of a big deal for me. It feels like the first day of school or something, but I’m not going to think about it too much. I’m just going to dive in.
So, in my mind I had grand ideas about what my first post would be and romanticized about the whole process. I imagined my first post would be about my quest to find the recipe of a plum cake I had in Brittany last summer and that I would be writing the post while having my Sunday morning cup of coffee with the whole day in front of me. Everything outside would be quite and still, no ambulances blaring just an easy Sunday morning. But alas, it’s not Sunday, it’s Tuesday night. Several ambulances have zipped by, instead of coffee I’m drinking a cup of Sweet Rose Tea, and you know what…all is well. Because sometimes life happens and things just may not go as planned, but that doesn’t mean it’s not possible.
Can I get an “Amen?”
Alright, now lets get this Thirteen Plums party started!
We’re going to start with my favorite Persian go-to side dish for any party or pot luck. My friends can never pronounce the name of this dish, but they never forget the flavor or the taste, it’s called Kashke Bademjan (Kash-keh Badem-jaan) and I know you’re going to love it. The combination of ingredients makes for some divine cooking alchemy. In this dish we have roasted eggplant, mixed with liquid whey (adds a creamy tart flavor like yoghurt), caramelized onions, sauteed garlic and mint all topped with saffron. And even though it’s our first time in the kitchen together you’ve got to trust me, you’ll be amazed at how simple and tasty this dish is.
- 2 lb. eggplant
- ½ cup olive oil plus 2 T. to sautee mint
- 2 medium sized onion, peeled and thinly sliced
- 5 cloves of garlic, peeled and finely chopped
- ¼ tsp. turmeric
- 3 T. chopped fresh mint
- ½ c. Kashk (liquid whey) *can be found at any Middle Eastern Market or online here
- ½ tsp. saffron, grind in mortar and pestle and add 3 T. warm water.
Preheat oven to 400F degrees. Rub the eggplant with olive oil and pierce all over the eggplant with a fork in order to let the steam escape while roasting. Place eggplant on a baking sheet and roast in the oven for 40 min. Take the eggplant out of the oven and let cool. Once cooled, peel off skin, set aside.
Heat up olive oil and sautee onions over medium heat until golden brown. Add garlic and turmeric, stir for 3 more minutes. Set aside some for garnish. Reduce heat to low and add eggplant and whey. Combine. Stir for 5 minutes, turn off heat.
Heat up remaining 2 T. of olive oil, add chopped mint. Sautee for 1-2 minutes. Set aside on paper towels to drain.
Add ¾ of sauteed mint to eggplant mixture. Stir.
Add 1 T. of liquid saffron to eggplant mixture. Stir.
Scoop eggplant mixture into serving bowl
Garnish the top with small dollops of liquid whey, drops of liquid saffron, sauteed mint and onions.
Serve with warmed pita or lavosh bread