Grilled Eggplant with Veggie Sauce

Why is it that vegetables + Asian flare turns into  a mini-miracle of yum when prepared on the grill? It’s a riddle for the ages, I guess (or Confucius).

We’re big fans of eggplant ’round these parts, but we don’t always know what to DO with it. The easiest answer is usually an Italian-inspired dish, but the thought of sauce and cheese on a warm summer day is too much of a good thing, in our opinion.

So we came up with this number, with a little help from our very favorite cookbook, Weber’s Real Grilling.

It's veggies on veggies.

It's veggies on veggies.

To start, let’s make the “sauce” or rather, veggie dressing. You will need:

  • 1 or 2 peppers (choose the long, Italian sweet peppers if you don’t like spicy; otherwise, jalapeno will do nicely). The original recipe calls for Serrano chile peppers, but they are a bit hard to find
  • 3 Tbsp. soy sauce
  • 2 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice (give in and buy them by the bag!)
  • 2 Tbsp. minced yellow onion
  • 1 Tbsp. water
The vegetable sauce that goes on your vegetables.

The vegetable sauce that goes on your vegetables.

Simply cut up what needs to be cut up and combine everything into one small bowl. Let it sit while you heat up the grill and prepare the eggplant. Speaking of which:

  • 2 globe eggplants, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch slices
  • vegetable oil
  • garlic powder

Cut the eggplant, brush with oil (or spray with the non-stick stuff) and season with the garlic.

Grill over direct medium heat until well marked and tender, about 8 to 10 minutes, turning once.

They take the heat well. But be careful removing them as they will be on the soft side.

They take the heat well. But be careful removing them as they will be on the soft side.

To serve, plate the slices of eggplant in a single layer and immediately spoon the dressing over top. Serve warm.

With what? Well, this is an awesome main dish, served with cold noodle salad (more coming on that soon). But it would also be good with Asian-inspired salmon or other fish. Use your imagination! And definitely break this out for company — it’s cheap, easy and downright elegant!

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