Spring just arrived but I’m already preparing foods suited for the summer. I love my winter (or what we call winter in Los Angeles), but I love my summer foods more. Break out the grill and prepare this light version of the popular caprese, grilled eggplant caprese with prosciutto!
- 2 small eggplants, sliced into 1/4 inch thick discs
- 1 garlic, minced
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 1 large heirloom tomato, sliced into 1/4 inch thick slices
- 8 ounces mozzarella, sliced into 1/4 inch thick slices
- salt and pepper
- 1/4 cup fresh basil, roughly chopped
- 1 tbsp good quality extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tbsp reduced balsamic vinegar
- 3 ounces prosciutto
- Heat grill or grill pan to medium-high.
- Sprinkle sliced eggplant with salt and let sit in colander for 10 minutes.
- Whisk together garlic, vinegar and olive oil. Pour vinaigrette over eggplant, tossing to coat. Grill eggplant for 2-3 minutes on each side or until marked and tender. Remove and keep warm.
- Season sliced tomatoes and mozzarella with salt and pepper. Layer eggplant with tomatoes and mozzarella. Sprinkle basil, drizzle olive oil and reduced balsamic on salad. Top with prosciutto. Serve.
**Helpful tips and common mistakes
I have yet to meet someone who doesn’t love a caprese salad. The combination of sweet, juicy tomatoes with soft, mild mozzarella and great quality olive oil and balsamic vinegar is a sure winner. Get that basic salad and add in ingredients like grilled eggplant and prosciutto, and it turns into one elegant salad or appetizer.
Before grilling the eggplant, slice and salt the vegetable. Salting the vegetable allows the juices to draw out, resulting in a firmer and less bitter eggplant. Older eggplants tend to be more bitter, so make sure not to skip this step.
If it’s still too cold to turn on the grill, use a cast-iron grill or stove-top grill for the same effect.
For the tomatoes, purchase heirloom tomatoes if available. What’s the difference between heirloom tomatoes and regular tomatoes? Heirloom tomatoes just taste better -they really do! They have a more intense flavor than hybrids and are overall, juicier and more beautiful aesthetically. If you never had an heirloom tomato, I beg you to try it immediately.
If you want to extra fancy, substitute the mozzarella with burrata and prosciutto with speck – I can only imagine how delicious it would be! Finish with reduced balsamic and fresh basil for the finishing touches. Perfect for a light lunch or as an appetizer, prepare this grilled eggplant caprese for your next meal.
Looking for someone to come to your house and prepare these dishes for you? It is possible! If you are in Los Angeles and looking for a private chef, please feel free to contact me. For more information, visit Private Kitchen Los Angeles.