Grilled Eggplant Thai Salad with Jasmine Rice

The next few blog posts are going to be all about veggies and grains. This coincides with the classes in the club and is a nice opportunity to share some of my favorite recipes.

One of my favorite herb combinations is cilantro and mint. Together they fill the air with a fresh and intoxicating aroma. This dish has lots of color and lots of flavor. The purple jasmine rice has a smoky/sweet quality that makes a wonderful base to the zing of the fish sauce and lime juice. I use a panini press/grill in the recipe and video to cook the eggplant. A grill pan will work well if you don’t have a press or just roasting in the oven.

Purple jasmine rice is available in Minneapolis at United Noodles. Black rice (forbidden rice) is a great alternative as is regular jasmine rice. I hope you enjoy the recipe!

Yield: 4

Grilled Eggplant Thai Salad with Purple Jasmine Rice

prep time: 15 minscook time: 45 minstotal time: 60 mins

ingredients:

Eggplant Mixture
  • 1 1/2 pounds small eggplants, sliced into 3/4-inch slices
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 cups plum tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/4 cup mint, chopped
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon Italian parsley, chopped
Dressing
  • 5 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons Thai fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspooon sugar
  • 1/2 hot chili (jalapeño, banana, or serrano) seeded and minced
Rice
  • 2 cups purple jasmine (can use regular jasmine) 
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 pinch kosher salt

instructions:

  1. Heat a panini grill to high. Brush eggplant slices with oil. Press slices for 6 to 8 minutes until slices are browned and tender all the way through. Do in batches. The eggplant should be dark and tear easily. As each batch is done, remove to a bowl. Cover bowl tightly with plastic wrap and allow eggplant to steam and eventually cool. Chop the eggplant coarsely and toss with herbs and tomato.
  2. Mix the lime juice, fish sauce, olive oil, sugar, and chili together and toss with the eggplant mixture. Allow to sit for 30 minutes: adjust seasoning.
  3. Rinse rice thoroughly and drain. In a small saucepan combine rice with water and salt: bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer, cover, and cook for 15 minutes until rice has absorbed the water. Let sit for 10 minutes and fluff.
  4. Serve the eggplant mixture over the hot rice. This recipe is also delicious cold.
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