Tomato and Eggplant Compote

February 4, 2015

Tomato and Eggplant Compote




There's a first time for everything. Our first steps, first kiss, first day of school, first love, first car, first job, first bungee jump, first trip abroad, first time stuck in an elevator for 30 minutes, first oyster, or first bout with food poisoning.
If we repeat an experience, it’s never the same as the first time. It couldn’t be, a repeatable first is by definition an oxymoron.
Then there are those firsts that we would gladly avoid repeating (put being stuck in an elevator and food poisoning on that list for me.)
Sometimes we learn a lesson from our firsts and sometimes we don’t.

Tomato and Eggplant Compote




First times in cooking can be awesomely atrocious.
Your first failed attempt to make macarons, that time you made a bouillabaisse that smelled like rotten fish, not to mention the ‘pie in a blender’ disaster.
Other times instead, they are major successes. Like making quinoa in one pot, spiralizing zucchini, or baking a paleo cookie in a mug.

Tomato and Eggplant Compote




Then one day you stumble upon a recipe that calls for “grated tomatoes” and you suddenly realize that you have spent all your life in a dark cave.
A place where tomatoes were sliced, chopped, peeled, pureed, sauced, roasted, fried even blended but never grated.
Seriously guys, this was my first time grating a tomato.

Tomato and Eggplant Compote




It almost felt like bungee jumping, minus the screaming.
And just like bungee jumping grating tomatoes is awesome.
It yields a pure pulp perfectly suited to so many uses. You can whisk the results into vinaigrettes, salsas, and gazpacho, or make tomato jam.
The slightly chunky pulp also works well in sauces, frittatas, and as a sandwich topper. There’s no peeling or chopping required.

Tomato and Eggplant Compote




Or you can make this fantastic Tomato and Eggplant Compote.
It literally takes 15 minutes to make it. It’s so easy, I couldn’t actually believe it.
And it’s so delicious.
It could be served as an appetizer with crostini or pita chips. It complements perfectly a flank-steak, but it makes an equally delicious topping for grilled pork chops or bruschetta.
Or you can do like me, and eat it by the spoonful when no one’s watching!

Tomato and Eggplant Compote

Tomato and Eggplant Compote                                                                               Print this recipe!
Barely adapted from Food&Wine

Ingredients
Makes about 3 cups

1 ½ lbs / 680 gr eggplant (about 2 medium), peeled and cut into ½-inch cubes
3 medium tomatoes
2 garlic cloves, minced
¾ teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon sweet paprika
4 tablespoons tomato sauce
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
Zest of ½ lemon
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
1 tablespoon chopped cilantro

Directions

Heat 1-inch of water in a large pan over medium-high heat, place a steamer basket inside the pan and set the diced eggplant in it.
Cover and steam the eggplant until tender, about 12 minutes. Drain well.
In the meantime, cut tomatoes in half across the width. Grate the meat side of the tomato using a coarse vegetable grater over a bowl or measuring cup (or a strainer over the bowl or cup), grating as close to the skin as possible (be careful not to grate skin though). Discard tomato skin.
In a large skillet combine grated tomatoes, garlic, cumin, and paprika. Simmer over medium heat until thickened, 5 minutes.
Add tomato sauce and steamed eggplant, and cook - gently stirring a few times - until the eggplant is flavored with the sauce, about 5 minutes (you’ll know you’re done when the eggplant begins to stick to the pan).
Remove from the heat and stir in the vinegar. Season with salt and pepper, add lemon zest, cilantro, parsley, and stir to combine.
Serve warm or at room temperature.

Nutrition facts

The whole batch yields 291 calories, 2 grams of fat, 47 grams of carbs, and 13 grams of protein.

38 comments:

  1. Obviously I am seriously deprived because I've never grated tomatoes either!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know it sounds weird but it's actually an amazing technique!

      Delete
  2. I've never heard of grating tomatoes before, I'm a little eager to try it out.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You totally should Lauren, it's uh-mazing

      Delete
  3. Wow, I would never think you could grate a tomato with its texture, that's cool! This recipe looks awesome, but I have to tell you, I'm much more interested in making that one-pan quinoa dish! Yum yum!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That one-pan quinoa is truly fantastic and so is this compote, you should try 'em both!

      Delete
  4. Pure comfort, love this Mike! You need a book deal. Stat.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You think so? I dunno man, I can't picture myself writing a cookbook...maybe I should wait a bit longer!

      Delete
  5. You grated a tomato? That's a first for me! All those spices make this oh so awesmazing!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Awesmazing is the right word to define this compote ;)

      Delete
  6. I will never forget my first time grating tomatoes, in fact I made a blog post about it, and if I remember correctly I called it "Grating Tomatoes and Loving it:"

    it is truly amazing what it does to tomatoes, taking it to a whole new level -

    Welcome to the Light!

    (now, you didn't bungee jump, did you? I might faint)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I need to check out that blog post of your Sally, and btw you're always one step ahead!

      Delete
  7. I could use a serving of this right now for lunch, looks amazing!

    ReplyDelete
  8. When I first saw the title of this recipe I wasn't particularly interested. But reading the ingredients and instructions changed my mind. You have a way of doing that to me, Mike. I'm always interested to see what you post. Also very intrigued by the idea of grating tomatoes - that's a first for me.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The fact that you're always interested in what I post is such a great validation of my work. Thank you for this Jesusan!

      Delete
  9. GRATING a tomato? I would probably end up grating my hand and mistaking blood for the juices! But that, my friend, looks like a masterpiece. I love the combination with an eggplant.

    Also bungee jumping? mate, you've lived the life!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm assuming you haven't tried bungee jumping yet. If so, YOU NEED TO Arman! It's one of those things you want/need/must try, at least once in your life!

      Delete
  10. I've yet to have my grated tomato 'first'.. but this post is all the inspiration and motivation I need Mike! Thanks for the idea!

    ReplyDelete
  11. So I have to admit that I too am a tomato grater newbie. But it sounds kinda awesome! I'm all about quick and easy, and this compote is just that. In fact, I think it would be great next to steaks for our next Wolfpack howl. Let's make it happen! I'll bring the cake. #WolfpackGrates

    ReplyDelete
  12. Gosh, it looks delicious! It's a must try for me! Yum!

    I'm cooking on youtube and I've just uploaded a recipe for homemade falafels, hope you will check it out! Thank you! :-) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=anFe4nYoX9s

    Thank you for an awesome recipe!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for stopping by Julia, I'm definitely going to check out your video!

      Delete
  13. I feel like every recipe you post, you unintentionally make it for me... Or perhaps it is intentional?!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's totally intentional GiGi, and tbh I'm kinda of offended that you doubted about it... :/

      Delete
  14. Never have I heard of grating a tomato... The recipe looks delicious!

    ReplyDelete
  15. Love your suggestion of putting this atop a flank steak, and then maybe if there's any leftovers I'm picturing the perfect omelet after that!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Putting it inside an omelet...that is a genius idea Kari. I'm going to try it tonight!

      Delete
  16. simply damn delicious and healty aubergine compote...
    Dedy@Dentist Chef

    ReplyDelete
  17. Lovely dish Mike.
    I'm not a tomato grater newbie so I'll have to worn people: be careful of your knuckles when grating tomato ;)

    ReplyDelete
  18. The spices in this sound great and I'm always up for a new eggplant recipe. As for the grated tomato, I did it once and lost a few knuckles, so I leave it up to my processor these days! Always enjoy your writing and these photos are amazing.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Grated tomato a revelation? I think so. Grated tomato is so Betty Crocker Cookbook circa 1941 and I mean that in a good way. I have a total vintage cookbook fetish. The best part is now I can grate tomatoes like our grandmothers back in the day in flour smeared aprons, chubby arms flapping for this decidedly not chubby arm recipe of awesomeness instead of Yankee Noodle Dandy.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Yum! I think I may eat that in one sitting...however, I wonder what would happen if I took the easy way out and vitamixed the tomato the way I vitamix my grated cheese. Hmmmm.

    ReplyDelete
  21. You don't grate tomatoes on weekends just for fun?! And we call you Alpha?! Hahaha, just kidding... I've never grated a tomato either. I'll be putting that on my bucket list #wolfpackeats

    ReplyDelete
  22. You don't grate tomatoes on weekends just for fun?! And we call you Alpha?! Hahaha, just kidding... I've never grated a tomato either. I'll be putting that on my bucket list #wolfpackeats

    ReplyDelete