Mamma Rosa's Eggplant Recipe
This is Mamma Rosa's real, genuine, eggplant recipe. It is always to be found on her table as a go-to side dish. It's a very simple dish but that comes with a catch: it's crucial to start with excellent, flavorful eggplants.
Those massive, waterlogged aubergines available at most grocery stores will result in a pretty bland dish. Look for small eggplants; we had much luck with the Indian variety.
Watch the Pasta Grammar video where we make this recipe here:
For this recipe, you will need:
Red wine vinegar (amount will vary, see below)
10 Indian eggplants, quartered (all the other ingredients are to taste so feel free to adjust however you like)
1-2 garlic cloves, diced
Dried oregano to taste
Dried fennel seeds to taste
Dry or fresh chili pepper, chopped (optional and to taste)
Extra virgin olive oil
Fill a large pot of water about 3/4 full with water. Next, add plenty of red wine vinegar. Vinegar strength varies A LOT, so you'll have to adjust to taste. The water should obviously dilute it, but it should still taste pretty strongly of vinegar. If you have a very strong vinegar it may only take a few cups but a weak vinegar might require nearly a half-and-half mixture. Trust your judgement, and you can always cheat and add a little vinegar later on if it proves to be too weak.
Bring the water to a boil and salt it generously. Add the eggplants and boil them until the are fork tender (about 10 minutes). Drain and place into a large bowl. Season them with the diced garlic and oregano, fennel and spicy pepper to taste.
Finish by generously drizzling in olive oil and stirring all together. Make sure you have enough oil to completely coat the eggplants. Drizzle with a little more vinegar if you find it necessary.
Serve cold. Buon appetito!