Salata De Vinete, or Eggplant Salad, is a common salad in many parts of Romania. Similar salads exist throughout Eastern and Southern Europe. Often, the salad is eaten with bread at breakfast or with bread as an appetizer/part of other meals. This version is without mayo or another creamy agent--making it ideal for summer picnics.
- Pierce eggplants with a fork on all sides.
- Broil the eggplants on a broiling pan in the oven. Broil, rotating approximately every 20 minutes, until all sides are well cooked and the eggplants begin to collapse and release juices. You can test doneness by pressing on the eggplants with a spatula or turner: the flesh should give and juices should drain out. (You could also grill the eggplants to get a smokier flavor).
- Remove pan from oven. Weight eggplants (e.g. setting a pyrex pan on top and weighting with canned goods) and allow to cool and for additional juices to drain.
- Finely mince shallot.
- Peel off all eggplant skin. Put eggplant flesh in bowl. Mash with fork. Add shallot, salt, olive oil, and lemon juice to taste.
- Serve with delicious, crusty bread.