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Bruschetta with Ricotta, Grilled Eggplant and Fresh Mint

When I saw this wonderful twist on a simple bruschetta, I just had to share it with our readers. The combination of grilled eggplant and fresh ricotta is devine. This recipe by Chef Viviane Bauquet Farre takes adds another dimension by showing how simple it is to make your own ricotta at home.

Bruschetta with Ricotta, Grilled Eggplant and Fresh Mint

makes 8 bruschettas or 4 servings
active time: 20 min

For the eggplants

  • 4 baby eggplants (1 lb) (455gr) ends trimmed and each cut lengthwise in 4 x 1/4″ slices
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • sea salt to taste

For the bruschettas

  • 8 slices ciabatta or other light, crusty country bread about 1”³ thick
  • 1 cup fresh ricotta cheese
  • sea salt to taste and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • extra virgin olive oil for drizzling
  • 16 large fresh mint leaves cut en chiffonade

Preheat gas grill to medium-high heat or prepare charcoal grill.

Step 1: Lightly brush the eggplant slices with the olive oil and lay on a jellyroll pan. When the grill is ready, place slices directly on the grill and grill until grill marks appear and slices are nicely browned, 3 to 4 minutes on each side. Transfer slices back to the jellyroll pan and sprinkle with salt. When slices are cool enough to handle, cut in 1/4″ dices, place in a bowl and set aside.

Step 2: When ready to serve (do not prepare these ahead of time as the bread will get soggy), grill the bread slices on both sides until grill marks appear, or place under the broiler until golden-brown. Top each slice with 2 tablespoons of ricotta and spread the cheese evenly over the surface of the bread. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Top with the chopped grilled eggplant. Drizzle with olive oil and garnish with the mint chiffonade. Serve immediately.

Cook’s note: If you don’t have a grill, you can roast the eggplant slices in a 500ºF pre-heated oven for 3 to 4 minutes on each side until the slices are golden-brown.

Photo Credit: Chef Viviane Bauquet Farre

 

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