Make Ahead

Roasted Kale and Eggplant Tapenade

September  1, 2011
8 Ratings
  • Prep time 30 minutes
  • Cook time 40 minutes
  • Makes 2 cups
Author Notes

Not quite a pesto, nor tapenade, nor hummus, this recipe takes elements of each and introduces a new cast of ingredients. Roasted kale and eggplant star, united by a process that renders one crisp, the other soft. The textural juxtaposition is balanced as the two are pureed together and infused with garlic and Italian herbs. Pistachios contribute a subtle nuttiness with balsamic vinegar adding a note of sweetness to round out the complexity of flavors in this Mediterranean-inspired spread.

A recipe that is easy to tweak according to personal taste, it is delicious at room temperature served with toasted rustic bread as a crostini, as a sauce for pasta or to top grilled meat / poultry. - alasully —alasully

Test Kitchen Notes

This fun summer dip is a nice alternative to hummus or babaganoush. The crispy kale and pistachios give the finish a nice texture and the balsamic adds a lovely touch of acidity. Grab the pita chips and dig in! - thehappycook —Victoria Ross

What You'll Need
  • 4 cups torn kale
  • 1 large eggplant
  • 5 cloves garlic
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar (plus additional for drizzling)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil (plus additional for drizzling)
  • 1 pinch dried Italian herbs (basil, thyme oregano)
  • 1 pinch sea salt
  • 1/2 cup freshly chopped parsley
  • 1/4 cup roasted pistachios
  1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Peel garlic cloves and set aside.
  2. Peel eggplant and cut into 1/2 inch slices lengthwise. Lay them in a pan, sprinkle both sides with sea salt and allow to sweat for about 15 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, wash about 4 cups of kale, pat dry with a towel and remove tough stems. Toss kale with olive oil and place in an oven-safe pan. Roast for 5 minutes, check and turn with tongs. Continue roasting for an additional 5 minutes until browned and slightly crisp. Remove from oven and set aside.
  4. After eggplant has rested, squeeze pieces between a paper towel to remove excess moisture. Cut into smaller pieces and combine with garlic cloves in a roasting pan (you can transfer the kale to a plate and reuse that pan for convenience). Drizzle eggplant and garlic with balsamic vinegar and olive oil and generous sprinkle with dried Italian spices of your choice (basil, thyme, oregano).
  5. Roast eggplant and garlic mixture for about 30 minutes, checking and stirring after 15. Eggplant should be very tender and browned. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.
  6. In a food processor, pulse together roasted kale, eggplant and garlic with 1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar, 1 Tbsp olive oil, 1/2 cup freshly chopped parsley and 1/4 cup roasted pistachios. Consistency should be smooth but not lacking texture.
  7. Taste and tweak seasonings to your liking. Best served at room temperature atop a toasted crostini round.
Contest Entries

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Ash King
    Ash King
  • Nikki Pryn
    Nikki Pryn
  • Fig and Quince
    Fig and Quince
  • alasully
  • boulangere

7 Reviews

Ash K. March 31, 2015
This was so delicious! Served it on toast with rocket, tomato, Proscuitto and buffalo mozzarella! Then popped in in a jar and it kept for a week. Thanks for the recipe.
Nikki P. June 1, 2013
Would it be ok to leave skin on the Aubergine (egg plant)? I have never ever peeled an Aubergine!
Riss October 18, 2012
Made this last night. I did not have pistacios so I used walnuts. It turned out really well! Delicious on a Wasa cracker. The only other thing I changed was to add a squeeze of lemon to give it a little more of a brighter, fresher finish.
Fig A. June 18, 2012
Kale is my new passion and pistachio is an old flame and I'm mad for eggplants. I just can not wait to try this.
Chef D. March 25, 2012
I tried this tonight at home. It's amazing! Even my 3 year old was loving it. I followed the recipe except I forgot fresh parsley at the store (so I used a few shakes of dried). It was still fantastic. Thanks for sharing!
alasully September 4, 2011
I love pepitas and urge you to give it a try! Unfortunately didn't have any on hand this time around...
boulangere September 1, 2011
Lovely combination. I have a pesky nut allergy. Would pepitas work here?