Roasted Eggplant with Chermoula sauce

Chermoula is a sauce or marinade that is full of complex and spicy flavors. Recipes for it vary greatly, but a Moroccan version usually includes cumin, paprika, parsley and lemon. The sauce is delicious served with any grilled or roasted fish, lamb and veggies. Here it adds delicious excitement to roasted eggplant slices. This recipe is loosely adapted from one in Cooking Light magazine. .

2 teaspoons cumin seeds
1 teaspoon coriander seeds
1 cup fresh cilantro
1 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley
2 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
2 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
½ teaspoon smoked paprika or regular paprika
½ teaspoon kosher salt
⅛ teaspoon ground red pepper
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for brushing
2 medium eggplants, trimmed and cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices (about 2 pounds), unpeeled

  1. Heat a dry skillet over medium heat. Add cumin and coriander seeds; cook 3 to 4 minutes or until toasted and fragrant.

  2. In the bowl of a mini-chopper, small food processor, or in a mortar and pestle, process or mash the spices, parsley, cilantro, garlic, paprika, and lemon juice until ground. With processor on, slowly pour olive oil through feed tube, processing just until blended.

    MAKE AHEAD: Sauce may be refrigerated for up to 3 days. 

  3. Place a large, heavy baking sheet in the oven and preheat the oven to 425°. Brush one side of eggplant slices with olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Carefully remove the hot baking sheet from the oven. Place eggplant on baking sheet oiled side down. Brush tops with olive oil. Roast until the eggplant is tender yet firm and rich brown, 20 to 30 minutes. Remove from the oven.

  4. Drizzle eggplant with Chermoula Sauce and sprinkle with chopped cilantro or parsley. 

Makes 6 servings.

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