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Author Notes: This vegetarian appetizer is perfect for warm summer evening. —jenniferw
- 2 eggplants (about 600 grams)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 4 sprigs thyme
- ½ lemon
- 3 sprigs basil
- 1 large garlic clove
- ½ crusty bread( about 250 grams)
- coarse sea salt
- Rinse eggplant, wipe dry and halve lengthwise. Score flesh with a sharp knife in a cross-hatch pattern. Place on a baking sheet, cut side up.
- Drizzle olive oil sparingly over the eggplant.
- Rinse thyme and shake dry. Season eggplant with salt and pepper and distribute thyme over the top. Bake inn a preheated oven at 200°C (fan 180°C, gas: mark 2-3) (approximately 400°F/convection 350°F), about 40 minutes.
- Let eggplant cool slightly, then remove thyme. With a spoon, scoop out the flesh.
- Finely chop eggplant pulp and place in bowl. Juice lemon. Add 2 tablespoons lemon juice to the eggplant pulp and season with salt and pepper.
- Rinse basil, shake dry and pluck leaves. Chop finely and mix well with eggplant.
- Halve garlic. Cut bread into 1 cm thick slices. Rub with garlic.
- Heat a grill pan (or skillet) over medium heat. Cook bread until brown and crispy on both sides.
- Top the toasted bread slices with eggplant. garnish with coarse sea salt and extra basil leaves. Serve bruschetta immediately.