Curried Eggplant with Spinach

Before I continue on with carb-fest 2011, how about an actual dinner?

Curried Eggplant

I’d never cooked eggplant before we started getting it in our CSA box a couple of years ago. I had no idea what to do with the thing, and so I was lucky that an issue of Food and Wine arrived almost immediately with what quickly became my go-to eggplant recipe. There was a point in the winter of 2010 that I think we were eating this at least once a week!

The first eggplant of the season arrived last week, and with it came the return of curried eggplant with spinach. It’s one of those great dump-and-roast recipes, and it makes great leftovers. (Everything will turn more yellow over time, though, so if you’re weird about food color, beware.) I usually serve this with naan, but as I learned the other night, it also goes great with warm spent grain soft pretzels!

Curried Eggplant with Spinach
(Adapted from Food and Wine)

Ingredients
1 large or 2 small eggplants, chopped into 3/4-inch chunks
1 large onion, diced or cut into wedges
1 15-oz can chickpeas, drained
2-3 garlic cloves
2 tsp your favorite curry powder
1 tsp ground ginger
5-6 cups of baby spinach
salt and pepper
a few tablespoons olive oil

Instructions
1. Preheat the oven to 425

2. Chop up the eggplant, place in a bowl, cover generously with salt, and let sit for 15 minutes.

3. Meanwhile, chop up the onion and finely mince the garlic.

4. Cover the bottom of a roasting pan with olive oil. Mix the minced garlic, curry powder, and ground ginger with the oil.

5. Rinse and drain the eggplant, and add it, the chickpeas, and the onion to the roasting pan. Stir until everything is covered with the oil mixture, and season with salt and pepper.

6. Roast for about 30 minutes, stirring once or twice during the process.

7. Working in batches, stir in the spinach until just wilted. I always later wish I’d added more spinach, so you can be pretty generous with it.

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