My blog has been quiet, as it usually is over the summer months, because my home has been full of toddlers and children (some of whom belonging to me) running in and out the front door, trips to the pools (with requisite snacks), and a generous handful of trips to visit family, see new places, try new food.
Of special note, was a trip to Pittsburgh's Conflict Kitchen, were my husband and I enjoyed a delicious Iranian lunch. The Conflict Kitchen is a take-out restaurant with a walk up counter, that serves a rotating menu from countries with which the United States is in conflict. This month, they serve a beautiful selection of Iranian dishes. About a year ago, in a controversial move, they rotated their menu to cover dishes from Palestine. If you are ever in Pittsburgh, do try to find it.
Back in my hot and humid Virginia, my kitchen is overflowing with luscious summer vegetables - zucchini, tomatoes, corn, eggplant. The summer months, though, bring more ambitious cooking projects to a halt. I crave simple, light meals, salads and simple cuts of protein, meals that keep me out of the kitchen and at the pool. On this particular day, I had several eggplants that needed some love, but I was far too hot to fire up the grill for eggplant dip, and far to lazy to contemplate a batch of eggplant bake, or menezali, so I found myself creating this simple eggplant dish.
One spoonful, and I was hooked. I've always loved eggplant, especially fried eggplant cubes, with its lovely velvety and luxuriant richness. This time, I added a drizzle of pomegranate molasses to cut through the richness and brightens and sweetens the dish. Add a sprinkle of toasted nuts, and suddenly this plate of vegetables, for me, becomes utterly crave-able.
I've served this over a bed of basmati rice, for a simple, meatless main dish, or as a warm side dish, with grilled chicken. Either way, you are in for a treat.