Mixed Greens with Smoky Eggplant Cream and Crunchy Bits

This salad has 'flavor bomb' written all over it. The combination of all the crunchy toppings brings great texture to this dish and the smoky eggplant cream is the secret sauce that pulls everything together.

Ottolenghi is a complete genius with this salad and the way all of the ingredients come together is pure bliss. Do yourself a favor and save this recipe to make this week – you won’t regret it!

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Ingredients and Recipe

Mixed Greens with Smoky Eggplant Cream and Crunchy Bits

Recipe Credit
Cookbook – Flavor: A Cookbook (p. 38)
Author – Yotam Ottolenghi
Note: This recipe has been updated + slightly altered for website editorial purposes.
Servings 4 people
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 55 mins
Total Time 1 hr 15 mins

Equipment

  • Chefs Knife
  • Measuring Spoons
  • Measuring Cups
  • Mise en Place Bowls
  • Baking Sheet
  • Parchment Paper or Silpat Baking Mat
  • Food Processor
  • Saute Pan
  • Rubber spatula

Ingredients

For the Smoky Eggplant Cream

  • 2 medium eggplants halved lengthwise, each inside half rubbed with 1 tsp of olive oil
  • tsp lemon juice
  • 1 clove garlic roughly chopped
  • 3 tbsp Greek-style yogurt
  • 2 tsp Dijon mustard
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil (60ml)
  • ½ tsp kosher salt
  • black pepper to taste

For the Crunchy Bits

  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • ½ cup almonds (60g) roughly chopped (sliced almonds can also be used as substitute)
  • 3 slices sourdough bread (3½ oz / 100g) blitzed in a food processor into coarse crumbs to get ¾ cup / 60g
  • cup pumpkin seeds (pepitas) (50g)
  • ¼ tsp kosher salt
  • ½ tsp chile flakes

For the Salad

  • 12 oz mixed greens (350g) the original recipe calls for 1 small head iceberg lettuce, cut into 12 wedges, if desired
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • ¼ tsp kosher salt
  • black pepper to taste
  • 1 oz Parmesan (25g) finely grated
  • oz radishes (45g) thinly sliced with a mandoline or chef's knife
  • 2 small avocados pitted, peeled and thinly sliced
  • ¼ oz chives (5g, about 6 chives) chopped

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 400°F
  • For the Cream:
    Place the eggplants on a parchment-lined baking sheet, cut side up, and roast until soft and very well browned, about 40-45 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl, cover with a large plate, and let soften for 20 minutes. Scoop the eggplant flesh out into the food processor, along with the lemon juice, garlic, yogurt, mustard, olive oil, salt and a few grinds of black pepper. Blend until completely smooth, about 1 minute, and set aside until needed.
  • For the Crunchy Bits:
    While the eggplant is in the oven, put the 1 tbsp olive oil into a large sauté pan on medium-high heat. Add the almonds and cook, stirring often, for about 2-3 minutes. Add the breadcrumbs, pumpkin seeds and salt. Cook for 5 minutes more, stirring constantly, until golden. Add the chile flakes and cook for another 30 seconds. Transfer to a bowl and let cook completely.
  • Constructing the Salad:
    Arrange the mixed greens (or iceberg wedges) on a large plate or platter. Drizzle with 2 tbsp of olive oil and a sprinkle of salt and pepper. Spoon the smoky eggplant cream, followed by Parmesan, radishes and avocado. Sprinkle lightly with more salt and pepper and drizzle remaining 2 tbsp of olive oil. Top with the chives and a generous amount of crunchy topping, serving any additional alongside.

Notes

The smoky eggplant cream can be made in advance on the same day, if desired. The longest part of this recipe is roasting the eggplant in the oven for 45 minutes, otherwise, this recipe comes together in about 15-20 minutes once all the ingredients are prepped.
Author: Yotam Ottolenghi
Course: Dinner, Lunch, Salad

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