Tuesday 2nd November 2021.
November 2, 2021
Today being All Souls day, it is tradition in Panama to be somewhat subdued, therefore our music is the softer side of my collection. Ingrid gives us some facts about the significance of the day. And as we get ready to start our National Holiday for the mes de la Patria, Yazmin gets ready for a few days in the hills outside of the city. Me clearing out the cupboards in the parking. All just too exciting we will be back with you next Monday.
Sara was with us as is normal on a Tuesday in the last hour and the topic today… I’ll let her tell you “First we’re talking classic….Eggplant Parm. This vegetarian version will even satisfy meat eaters! Plus, the frying part can also be done in your air fryer! ; )
Next, we’re going onto one of Corey’s favourite dips…Baba Ganoush! This creamy and delicious spread goes great with some pita or veggies! I’ve got 2 different cooking methods Grill or Oven…depending on what our listeners have access to!
To cut through these delicious rich flavours, we’re going to make a New York Sour! This take on a Bourbon Sour looks really impressive!
2 medium eggplant (about 2 1/4 pounds), cut into 1/2-inch-thick round slices
Kosher salt, as needed, plus 1 tablespoon
5 cups fresh breadcrumbs
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon dried thyme
Vegetable oil for frying
All-purpose flour for dredging
6 large eggs, beaten
2 tablespoons whole milk
Olive oil, as needed
7 cups QUICK MARINARA SAUCE (recipe below), or jarred marinara
2/3 cup grated Parmesan, divided
1 pound fresh mozzarella, thinly sliced
QUICK MARINARA SAUCE
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 medium onion, diced (about 1/3 cup)
3 cloves garlic, chopped
7 cups whole, peeled, canned tomatoes in puree (about two 28-ounce can), roughly chopped
2 sprigs of fresh thyme
2 sprigs of fresh basil
1 tablespoon kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
- Arrange the eggplant slices on several baking sheets and sprinkle generously all over with kosher salt. Set aside to let the bitter juices weep from the eggplant, about 1 hour.
- Transfer the eggplant to a colander in the sink, and rinse well under cold running water. Transfer eggplant to a work surface and blot very dry with paper towels.
- Whisk together the 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, breadcrumbs, oregano, thyme, and season with pepper and put in in a medium shallow dish or bowl.
- Set up a breading station in medium shallow dishes or bowls. Place the flour in one, whisk the egg and milk together and your seasoned breadcrumbs in the 3rd. Dredge an eggplant slice in the flour, then dip it in the egg, and finally dredge it in the breadcrumb mixture. Shake off any excess in each pass and transfer the eggplant to a baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining eggplant.
- In a large straight-sided skillet, pour the oil to a depth of 1/2 inch. Heat the oil over medium heat until it registers 400 degrees F on a deep frying thermometer. (The oil must be heated to 400 degrees F. so that the breaded eggplant, when added, will drop the temperature of the oil to the proper frying temperature of 375 degrees F.)
- Working in small batches, fry the eggplant slices, turning once, until golden brown, about 3 minutes per batch. Using tongs, transfer to a paper towel-lined baking sheet and season with salt to taste. Repeat with the remaining eggplant. (Eggplant can also be prepared in an air fryer).
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Lightly brush a 15 x 10- x 2-inch-baking dish with olive oil. Cover the bottom of the baking dish with 1/3 of the marinara sauce and arrange half of the eggplant over the sauce. Cover the eggplant with another 1/3 of the sauce. Scatter half of the Parmesan and half of the mozzarella over the sauced eggplant. Repeat with the remaining eggplant, sauce, Parmesan, and mozzarella. Bake until hot and just beginning to brown, about 30 minutes. Serve immediately.
QUICK MARINARA SAUCE
- Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Saute the onion and garlic, stirring, until lightly browned, about 3 minutes. Add the tomatoes and the herb sprigs and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer, covered, for 10 minutes.
- Remove and discard the herb sprigs. Stir in the salt and season with pepper to taste. Use immediately, store covered in the refrigerator for up to 3 days, or freeze for up to 2 months.
- Yield: about 3 1/2 cups
2 large eggplants ( 1.5 to 1.75 lbs each)
2 garlic cloves, finely minced (use a garlic press)
4 tablespoons tahini paste
1 teaspoon kosher salt
optional: 2 tablespoons plain full-fat yogurt
**Wood chips required for grilling method
Oven Roasting Method:
- Preheat oven to 450F ( 425F if electric oven)
- Slice eggplants in half, lengthwise and roast with flesh side down, on a parchment-lined sheet pan on the middle rack, until very tender, about 45-60 minutes. Test by piercing the skin with a fork, and continue roasting until flesh is very tender and collapsing. Let cool.
- Scoop out flesh, drain in a strainer for 10 minutes. You should have about 2 cups, if less, see notes.
- Mash with a fork and add the remaining ingredients. To achieve the smoky flavor, add a 1/4- ½ teaspoon of liquid smoke.
- Adjust salt and lemon to taste. Stir in optional yogurt.
- Preheat grill to medium-high or oven to 425 F
- Make a foil packet with wood chips for smoking. Wrap ½ cup of wood chips (mesquite, alder, apple) in heavy-duty foil and pierce the top, creating an opening in the foil so smoke can escape. Place this on the grill. See photos.
- With a sharp pairing knife cut 1-2 inch deep slits into the eggplant, all over especially around the bigger bottom area. This will allow them to cook more evenly, and help the smoke penetrate the eggplant.
- When the foil packet is smoking, place the eggplant directly on the grill, and close the grill. Turn eggplant every 10 minutes or so and let the skin char. Grill until eggplant has collapsed and feels tender on the inside. This will take about 20 minutes.
- Place the eggplant along with the smoking foil packet in a large bowl or large pan and cover tightly with foil. Let sit until cool enough to handle about 20 minutes.
- Save ALL the smoky liquid that is under the eggplant in the bowl. Peel the charred skin off the eggplant and using a knife, chop up the tender flesh. Place the eggplant in a strainer and strain the eggplant flesh for 10 minutes. Discard this liquid. (I know this may seem counter-intuitive – but you will be adding some of the “smoky” liquid from the first bowl back in.)
- Place the drained eggplant in a mixing bowl. You should have 2 cups (or 2 1/4 cups) of eggplant flesh. If you have less, see notes.
- Add the tahini paste, garlic, lemon, salt and 1-2 tablespoons (or more to taste) of the smoky liquid reserved from the bowl.
- Mix, taste, adjust salt, lemon.For a delicious richness, add 2-3 tablespoons plain yogurt (optional). Stir with a fork until relatively smooth. Refrigerate until serving.
- Place in a shallow serving bowl, make a circular “well” with the back of a spoon and drizzle with olive oil, and your choice of aleppo chili flakes, zaatar spice or sumac.
- Sprinkle with fresh herbs.
- Serve with warm pita bread and/or veggies.
New York Sour
- 2 ounces (4 tablespoons) bourbon whiskey
- 1 ounce ( 2 tablespoons) lemon juice
- ½ ounce (1 tablespoon) maple syrup or simple syrup
- 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) dry red wine
- Optional garnish: lemon twist
- Add the bourbon, lemon juice, and syrup to a cocktail shaker and fill it with a handful of ice. Shake until very cold.
- Strain the drink into an ice-filled lowball or Old Fashioned glass.
- Carefully pour the red wine over the back of a spoon just above the surface of the drink, creating a layer on top. Serve with a lemon twist if desired.
Try it with Maple Syrup!
The sweetener for a whiskey sour is traditionally simple syrup. But you can also use maple syrup in this New York Sour!
- Maple syrup gives a nuanced sweetness. Simple syrup gives a drink a straightforward, piercing sweetness. In contrast, the sweetness with maple is more nuanced and adds complexity to the drink. Most importantly: it doesn’t taste like maple at all! (Really.)
- It’s a natural sweetener (not refined sugar). Maple syrup still contains sugar, of course! But if you like to use natural sweeteners, this is the way to go.