This is my third dish in a string of salads with pomegranate molasses. No bulgur here, so my brain didn’t do the auto-compare with The Best Salad Ever.
This is a salad filled with green beans, roasted eggplant and roasted red peppers. I liked the Spanish paprika, cinnamon and cumin with the roasted eggplant, so there was a savoury twist I wasn’t expecting. I may remove the cumin next time, though. The green beans added a nice crunch, and a lovely colour to boot. I also enjoyed the creaminess from the feta, but it is completely optional. The mild pomegranate dressing worked well to not overshadow the savoury flavours in the salad. I preferred this salad to the tabbouleh, despite it being less of a complete meal. Serve it with some crusty bread or wrap it in a pita as a portable lunch.
Roasted Eggplant, Red Pepper and Green Bean Pomegranate Salad
2 lb eggplant (around 2 large eggplants), chopped into bite sized pieces
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 teaspoon cumin, toasted and ground
1/2 teaspoon Spanish paprika
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
2 roasted red peppers, chopped
1 pound green beans, ends trimmed and chopped into 1-inch pieces
1/4 cup red onions, finely chopped
1/8 cup mint, chopped
1/4 cup slivered almonds, toasted
1/4 cup pomegranate seeds
1/4 cup feta, chopped (omit if vegan)
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon pomegranate molasses
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 clove garlic, minced
1. If roasting your own peppers, preheat the oven broiler. Line a small roasting pan with aluminum foil. Place the pepper halves in the pan, cut side down, and place in the oven on the shelf closest to the broiler. Broil until the pepper skins are completely black, about 8-15 minutes. Remove from the oven, wrap the pepper in the foil and allow to stand for 10 minutes. Remove the foil and rub off the skins of the peppers. Set peppers aside to cool and then cut in bite-size pieces.
2. Salt the eggplant and let it sit for 20 minute, rinse and pat it dry.
3. Toss the eggplant in the olive oil and season with the cumin, paprika, cinnamon, salt and pepper. Spread the eggplant over 2 baking sheets, making sure not to overcrowd (otherwise they will steam, not roast). Roast the eggplant in a preheated 400F oven until tender, about 30-40 minutes and set aside.
4. Meanwhile, blanch the green beans for 2-3 minutes in boiling water. They should still be crisp and a brilliant green. Feel free to halt the cooking process by immersing them in cold water. I usually skip this step.
5. Whisk together olive oil, lemon juice, pomegranate molasses, mustard and garlic. Set aside.
6. Assemble roasted eggplant, roasted red peppers, blanched green beans, red onion, mint, and pomegranate seeds. Toss with dressing.
7. Top with feta and almonds before serving.