When eating Italian, I feel like I’m often on an Easter egg hunt. Like my little nieces and nephews this past weekend, I am on a search. Only this search is for the garlic. And when my fork and spoon come across a clove, rejoice, my taste buds do. I am one who can never get enough garlic. Hence the 20+ cloves that went into this eggplant dish.
There are instances where, yes, I admit, you can go overboard on garlic. But with eggplant, I find that rarely rings true. Like it does with oil, eggplant is a sponge for flavor. The sweetness of sautéed or roasted garlic is often what I bring out to get soaked up.
Here, the eggplant and garlic is paired with a bite of arugula and sun-dried tomatoes. It’s a flavorful dish that holds up well to whole grains or pasta. Enjoy with others if you don’t want your flavorful perfume to go noticed.
- -3 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil, plus more to drizzle
- -1 medium-large eggplant, cubed
- -22-25 medium-large cloves of garlic, chopped
- -1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes, julienned
- -1/2 tsp. dried basil
- -2 1/2-3 cups arugula
- -Salt and pepper, to taste
- -1 cup brown rice (or pasta)
- Combine rice in a pan with 2 cups of water. Cover and bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer and let cook 40-50 minutes, or until rice is fluffy and tender.
- Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat oil over medium. Add garlic, and let cook for 3 minutes. Stir in eggplant, and season with salt and pepper. Cook for 4 minutes, stirring frequently. Add sun-dried tomatoes and basil. Cover, and continue to cook until eggplant is tender, removing the cover frequently to stir.
- Add arugula, and cook until wilted. Adjust salt and pepper, to taste. Remove from heat.
- Drizzle rice with olive oil to lightly coat. Season with salt and pepper. Top with eggplant, and serve.