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Grilled Eggplant Soup with Tomato-Garlic Relish

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Grilled Eggplant Soup with Tomato-Garlic RelishIngredients:  4 to 5 servings

1 kg. round eggplant (about 1 or 2)

4 garlic cloves, sliced

1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves

2 bay leaves

4 tablespoons olive oil, divided

1 tablespoon butter

1 large onion, chopped

1½ tablespoons flour

4 garlic cloves, crushed

4½ cups chicken stock

Salt if needed and freshly ground white pepper

For relish

1 tablespoon olive oil

3 garlic cloves, finely chopped

2 tomatoes, deseeded and cut to small cubes

1 teaspoon white wine vinegar

¼ teaspoon dried thyme leaves

2 tablespoons chopped parsley

Salt and freshly ground white pepper

 

1. Pre heat oven to 175 Cº (350 Cº).

2. Cut eggplants in half lengthwise and make deep crosscuts on the surface of the cut side.

3. Insert the sliced garlic and the bay leaves in the cuts and sprinkle with the dried thyme.  Pour on top half the olive oil.

4. Place the eggplants cut side up on baking pan, cover with aluminum foil and bake 50 minutes or till tender.

5. Place the rest of the olive oil and butter in a pan and fry onion till golden in color, add the crushed garlic and flour and fry for few seconds more.

6. Pour the stock gradually over the onion-garlic mixture stirring all the time till the mixture comes to the boil.

7. Scoop out the flesh of the eggplants and add to the simmering stock, simmer few minutes.

8. Place the mixture in the blender and blend till smooth.  Strain.

9. Pour soup in a bowel and serve hot with relish on top.

10. To prepare relish:  Place olive oil in a pan on medium heat and add the chopped garlic, stir for few seconds then add the tomatoes and stir to heat through, add the vinegar, thyme, seasoning and remove from heat, add parsley.

Variation: 

Replace relish with 100 g. feta cheese, cubed.

To reduce calories: 

Grill eggplants without the oil.  Do not fry the onion and garlic, cook with the chicken stock for 5 minutes.

   
© 2005 Cooking Courses Marlene Matar