Eight ingredients, plus pantry staples. That’s all it takes to cook a complete meal from scratch. Add a good bottle of wine for less than $20 and you have a feast for family or friends.
This pantry-friendly eggplant flatbread recipe is perfect for those warm summer nights when you want to get out of the kitchen and spend more time outdoors eating (and drinking) with good friends. In fact, if you have a grill, you can prepare the whole meal outside.
Grill a few pounds of sliced eggplant (no need to peel them) until tender and silky. No grill? No problem. Use a grill pan or cast iron skillet on the stove. Toss the eggplant in a zesty mixture of lemon juice, red wine vinegar, sugar, and fragrant fresh mint, then marinate all of this mixture for at least 15 minutes, then stir in the sliced red onion.
From there, dinner is pretty much over. Combine lemon zest and Greek yogurt, brush with warmed store-bought flatbread, then top with eggplant mixture. This simple, vegetarian meal can be prepared in less than an hour. Of course, if you’re craving more weight for the evening, since the grill is already hot, you can add a pound or two of other protein, like thinly sliced sausage or boneless chicken thighs, and the also add to your flatbread. .
All that remains is to settle the wine. Scarbolo Pinot Grigio Friuli Ilramato 2020, a ramato-style Pinot Grigio from Italy that’s not quite an orange wine (but not quite rosé or white either), is one of those bottles that easily makes the transition from the afternoon sip to the dinner table. Slightly floral, with hints of stone fruit, the wine will not overpower the light meal. At 88 points and $15, this is a bottle I’ll be picking up all summer – for dinner parties, beach picnics and everything in between.
Flatbreads with marinated eggplant and lemon yogurt
Pair it with a skin-to-skin wine with hints of citrus and honey to highlight the tangy eggplant and rich yogurt sauce or, as we did here, the Scarbolo Pinot Grigio Friuli Ilramato 2020 (88 points, $15).
Preparation time: 35 minutes
Active cooking time: 10 minutes
Total time: 45 minutes
Approximate food costs: $14
- 1 large lemon
- 1 cup full-fat Greek yogurt
- Kosher salt
- 5 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided, plus more for grilling
- 3 tablespoons of red wine vinegar
- 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons dried oregano (or 2 tablespoons freshly chopped)
- 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
- 2 1/2 pounds (about 3 medium) globe eggplants, cut into 1/2-inch-thick rounds (or half-moons if over 3-inches wide)
- 1 cup fresh mint leaves, divided
- 1 small red onion, halved by the root and very thinly sliced
- 6 to 8 store-bought flatbreads or naans
1. Zest the lemon (about 1 tablespoon) in a small bowl. Stir in the yogurt and 1 tablespoon of water. The mixture should be spreadable and not runny. Season with salt to taste. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
2. Prepare a gas or charcoal grill for direct medium heat, 350-375°F, and lightly oil the grates (or heat an oiled grill pan on the stovetop over medium-high heat).
3. In a large bowl, squeeze the lemon (2 to 3 tablespoons), then stir in the vinegar, 2 tablespoons of olive oil, sugar, oregano, a large pinch of salt and the flakes red pepper, if desired.
4. Place eggplant in a medium bowl with 3 tablespoons of olive oil. Season with a few large pinches of salt. When grill or grill pan is ready, grill eggplant slices, turning every two minutes, until tender and beginning to char, 5 to 8 minutes. If you’re assembling and serving the flatbreads right away, leave the grill on. (If you’re using a griddle pan on the stovetop, turn off the heat until you’re ready to reheat the flatbread.)
5. Transfer the hot eggplant to the lemon juice mixture, along with a handful of mint. Marinate at room temperature for at least 15 minutes (or refrigerate up to 24 hours). Transfer to a serving platter and garnish with the remaining mint.
6. When ready to assemble the flatbread, toss the onion slices into the eggplant mixture. Heat flatbreads (2 per serving) on grill or skillet over medium heat (or in a 300ºF oven) until heated through. Assemble the flatbreads with a dash of lemon yogurt and a scoop of eggplant. For 3 to 4 people.