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Roasted Eggplant with Tomatoes, Olives, Capers and Basil

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Serves 6 | Prep time: 20 minutes | Total time: 1 hour 40 minutes

 Ingredients

  • 1 large eggplant, cut into 2-inch pieces (no need to peel the eggplant)
  • Sea salt
  • 20 cherry tomatoes, quartered
  • 1 small onion, halved and chopped very thinly
  • 1 tablespoon capers
  • 15 pitted kalamata olives, cut lengthwise
  • 3 large cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 heaping tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • Chopped fresh basil (about 10 large leaves, or more if you like)

 Directions

  1. Put the cut-up eggplant in a large strainer and sprinkle it with lots of sea salt. Let it sit over a bowl for about 30 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, combine the tomatoes, onion, capers, olives, garlic, tomato paste, and olive oil. Stir well to combine.
  4. Rinse the eggplant and pat it dry with a clean dish towel (or paper towels).
  5. Transfer the eggplant to a 9-by-13-inch glass baking dish.
  6. Pour the tomato mixture over the eggplant and roast in the oven for 1 hour, or until the eggplant is soft and very tender.
  7. Toss the eggplant a few times throughout the roasting process to ensure even cooking and to prevent sticking.
  8. When the eggplant is cooked, remove it from the oven and stir in the chopped fresh basil. If you think it needs it, add some more extra virgin olive oil.
  9. Garnish with more basil and serve warm or at room temperature. This dish tastes even better when eaten the next day, so it is wonderful to make in advance.
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