Melitzanosalata video recipe


Eugene, who usually goes behind the camera, has gone in front of the camera to present to you KO's Melitzanosalata! Eugene learned how to make this dip during a trip to Santorini, over a decade ago, where he received a personal and impromptu lesson on grilling and smoking eggplants at Captain John's Tavern, an isolated tavern on the beach-side of the island at that time. Eugene has now taught our eldest to make this dip and he in turn has taught his friends, who in turn have taught their parents. Yes, it’s that good, that everyone wants to learn how to make it! Watch, learn, prepare it yourself and see how many people you inspire to learn to make this simple, yet delicious dip! Kali Orexi

For the Melitzanosalata

You will need…
5 large eggplants
1-2 cloves of garlic
1 heaped teaspoon salt
Generous drizzle of extra virgin olive oil

How to… 

Grill and smoke the eggplants
Place whole eggplants on the barbecue preheated on ‘High.’ Lower the barbecue lid, but leave it ajar
Grill the eggplants, turning them over every 5 minutes or so. If there are hot spots on your barbecue, move the eggplants around so they all cook evenly
Continue grilling the eggplants until all the water in them has cooked off and the eggplants collapse when you press on them gently (approximately 45-50 minutes)
Turn off the barbecue and leave the eggplants in the barbecue for about 15 minutes, with the lid completely closed. This will allow them to smoke and dehydrate further
Remove the eggplants from the barbecue

Prepare the Melitzanosalata

While the eggplants are cooling a little, finely chop 1-2 cloves of garlic. You do not want the garlic flavour to overpower the smoky flavour in the melitzanosalata. If you are unsure about the strength of your garlic, just add one clove at a time until you have the desired taste
Add one heaped teaspoon of salt to the chopped garlic and mash it into a paste
Add the mashed garlic to a mixing bowl
Carefully pull the charred skin off the eggplants and scrape their flesh out onto a chopping board. Discard the charred eggplant skin. Coarsely chop the eggplant flesh and add it to the mixing bowl
Generously drizzle with extra virgin olive oil
Mix the garlic, eggplant and olive oil together
Taste for salt and oil

Serve the Melitzanosalata

Serve on crusty bread or as an accompaniment to vegetables or meat

Melitzanosalata Key Points
The most important part of making this dip is the grilling and the smoking of the eggplants -

The barbecue heat must remain on ‘High’ throughout the grilling process
The skin of the eggplants will char and blister during the cooking process, even revealing some eggplant flesh – that is okay
Use large tongs to gently lift and rotate the eggplants on the barbecue
All of the water in the eggplants must be cooked off, otherwise the flavour of the dip will be diluted
Once all the water in the eggplants has cooked off and the eggplants are dehydrated, the flesh of the eggplants will caramelise and brown a little. This will add flavour to the dip
Be careful when handling the grilled eggplants, as their flesh is very hot. Hold the stalks of the eggplants and use tongs to remove the skin and scrape the flesh out
You can add chopped parsley and chopped walnuts to the dip for additional flavour and texture
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