I know the year’s barely begun, but this dish from Yotam Ottolenghi’s Jerusalem is well on its way to being my most memorable meal of 2015. Maybe even the past decade.
And this from a gal who says she doesn’t like eggplant.
If you don’t own Jerusalem, you must. Every recipe in it is a gem. The day after I was given it from my dear friends Karen and Steven, (OMG thank you!), my book club was over for dinner. They all gathered round and placed stickies on their favorite recipe in the book that I simply must make. The entire book is one giant sticky collection, but somehow this recipe escaped their stickies – my turn to give them a Jerusalem must-make!
My husband and I have already decided that this is what we’re serving the very next time we have company for dinner. It’s perfect for a dinner party because you can put it all together ahead of time, then let the eggplant roast for an hour and a half, giving you plenty of time to clean up the kitchen, set the table and make dessert or appetizers before your guests arrive. Not to mention, you can serve it warm or at room temp. It just doesn’t get any better.
I made one change to the recipe, which was to toast the pine nuts before using them. We toyed around the idea of adding some golden raisins to the meat mixture, but in the end did not. We also considered a breadcrumb topping, but again, left that be. It was pretty darned perfect just as it was.