This fresh, summery salad combines soft grilled eggplants and lots of fresh herbs. Make a big batch since cold leftovers make great pita fillings with hummus and extra greens. Serve with a big squeeze of lemon for a refreshing kick.

Za’atar Grilled Eggplant Salad [Vegan]

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Ingredients

For the Salad:

  • 4 small eggplants
  • Salt
  • Olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon za’atar (recipe below)
  • 1 cup beluga lentils, preferably soaked overnight
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted
  • 1/4 cup golden raisins or currants
  • 1 cup packed fresh herbs; mint, parsley, and dill
  • Juice and zest of one lemon
  • Black pepper and salt, to taste

 For the Za’atar Home Blend:

  • 1/4 cup sumac
  • 1/4 cup sesame seeds, toasted
  • 2 tablespoons dried thyme
  • 1 tablespoon dried marjoram
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
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Preparation

To Make the Za’atar Home Blend:

  1. Combine all the ingredients in a bowl and mix well. Keep in an airtight jar in your pantry.

To Make the Salad:

  1. Slice the eggplant into rounds, place in a colander, and sprinkle generously with sea salt. Set aside for 30 minutes, or up to 1 hour, flipping over every now and then.
  2. Rinse and drain the lentils, and place in a large pot with 4 cups of water. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer for 20 minutes, until the lentils are cooked al dente. Don’t overcook, or you will have a mushy salad. Drain any excess water and rinse the lentils clean. Set aside.
  3. Preheat your bbq or grill pan to medium-high heat, and lightly press the eggplant with a kitchen towel to remove any excess water. Brush the sides generously with olive oil and sprinkle with za’atar. Place on a grill and flip after 5-7 minutes, then cook for another 5-7 minutes. Brush with extra olive oil if looking dry. Eggplant is done when the meaty center is soft and tender.
  4. Toss the cooked, cooled lentils with all the herbs, raisins, and toasted pine nuts. Season with salt and pepper and dress with a little olive oil and fresh lemon juice.
  5. Top with grilled eggplant, sprinkle with extra za’atar and lemon zest.
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Nutritional Information

Total Calories: 1062 | Total Carbs: 193 g | Total Fat: 28 g | Total Protein: 38 g | Total Sodium: 88 g | Total Sugar: 110 g Calculation not including salt used on eggplants prior to cooking, oil used to brush eggplant, tablespoon of za'atar mix, or salt and pepper to taste. Note: The information shown is based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.