Showing posts with label marinate. Show all posts
Showing posts with label marinate. Show all posts

Friday, August 2, 2013

Marinated Broiled Eggplant

by Sheila Connolly

Our tiny local farmers market is finally in full swing, and will stay open until October or the veggies run out, whichever comes first.  A week ago I had the last batch of peas from a nearby organic farm, and they were lovely.  I grew up in an era that celebrated BirdsEye frozen vegetables, so I didn't know the pleasure of peas only hours away from the farm.  Yes, you still have to put in some time shelling the peas, but there's something soothing about it, and it's nice to be part of a long tradition.

Anyway, the peas were gone this past weekend, the corn is doing well, and one booth had a batch of Japanese eggplant.  I said, "I want them all!" (Don't worry—it was only a pound.) 

Now, what to do with eggplant…  Again, something I didn't grow up eating (I was a picky eater as a child and wouldn't touch a tomato, so eggplant wasn't an option).  I've come up with a variety of recipes, including one for Mystery Lovers' Kitchen for eggplant pizza that surprised me.  But I'm happy to try new recipes, and I found one with an oriental flair that worked well with, yes, Japanese eggplant. 

While it does involve a broiler, it doesn't take long so you won't heat up your kitchen.  I don't think you could substitute a barbecue grill, but it might be worth a try.

Marinated Broiled Eggplant

1 pound eggplant (you can use one large one or several small ones)

2 1/2 Tblsp soy sauce
1 Tblsp lemon or lime juice
1 Tblsp honey
1 clove minced/pressed garlic
1 tsp grated fresh ginger (peeled if you like, 
     and I also added more than a teaspoon!)

Vegetable oil for pan

Whisk together the soy sauce, juice, honey, garlic and ginger.  Pour into a glass baking dish or large non-metallic bowl.

Trim the ends off the eggplant and slice 1/8" thick.

Toss the eggplant slices (carefully, so you don't mangle them) in the marinade.  Cover and let sit for at least 20 minutes, but not more than one hour (you don't want them to get too soggy), turning at least once.

Preheat the broiler.  Brush the rack of a broiler pan (I covered mine with foil—less cleaning) with oil and distribute the eggplant evenly.  Broil 5-7" below the flame (probably the upper rack in your oven) until tender and slightly browned, maybe 10 minutes. (Note:  Adora has not one but two broiler heats! I used LO to cook the eggplant, and HI to brown it off a bit.)

It makes a tasty side dish for grilled meat or fish. Served here with chicken and couscous.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Cleo Coyle's Coffee Marinated Steak

Here’s a simple tip for making an economical cut of meat delicious—and a nice use for your leftover joe, too, because why not make use of every last drop?

Why I love this recipe: Grilling is a cooking process that too often overly dries thinner or less expensive cuts of meat. My coffee marinade imparts a wonderful, earthy character to the meat while also plumping it up, keeping it moist throughout the grilling process. Sure a super-fat T-bone steak would retain its moistness, but who can afford cuts like that for the whole family? As an experiment, I grilled my top round coffee-marinated steak alongside a rib eye steak treated only with dry rub. The top round was half the price, but tasted twice as good, thanks to its little bath in bean juice!

"Can't you just hear the sizzle?"....

Ingredients:Steaks for grilling or broiling
(I use top round)Cold coffee
Salt & Pepper
Worcestershire sauce (optional)Scallions or shallots (optional)Steak dry rub (optional)

Step 1: Purchase meatGo for an economical cut. (I use top round steak.) Pound the steak out with the spike side of a meat hammer. If you don’t have a meat hammer, then put your steak in a plastic bag and pound it with a regular hammer or the back of a ladle – and then prick it all over with a fork. This starts the tenderizing process. (It also gets all kinds of frustrations out. Who needs therapy when you can pound meat?)

Step 2: Cover with coffee
Place your steaks in a glass or plastic container and pour enough cold coffee over them to cover. You can use any kind of coffee. Just save the last dregs of your coffee pot for a few days (store in fridge) and you should have enough for the marinade.

Step 3: Add a little seasoning Add a tablespoon of salt (I like sea salt), a dash of pepper, and (optional) a couple of diced scallions or shallots along with a dash of Worcestershire sauce. Cover the container with plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for 1 to 3 hours. No longer.

Step 4: Remove and grillPull the steaks out of the container and discard the liquid. Do not rinse. Just apply a favorite dry rub. There are many dry steak rubs available in your grocery aisle. (My favorite is Szeged brand Steak Rub in the cute little black metal can. Pictured right.) Cook your coffee-marinated steaks on a charcoal or gas grill, or broil the meat in the oven.

When my amateur sleuth, coffeehouse manager Clare Cosi, made a version of this dish in Through the Grinder, she cooked it in a cast iron skillet on the top of her stove. The stovetop is a great option, too, because it allows for pan drippings, which means...gravy! So I couldn’t resist having Clare whip up a delish side dish of Garlic Mashed Potatoes with Hearty Coffee Gravy. Yes. Coffee gravy! Lol! You can find those recipes in the back of Through the Grinder, too.

To find out more about my culinary mystery series, visit my Coffeehouse Mystery Web site, where you’ll find more recipes, as well.

Cheers, everyone! ~ Cleo