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6 to 8
Bertrand Chemel, from "The Art of Blending" by Lior Lev Sercarz
6 plum or other paste tomatoes
3 long Japanese eggplants or 2 medium globe eggplants (about 2 pounds)
1/4 cup honey
3 garlic cloves with skin, lightly crushed
3 rosemary sprigs
4 sprigs lemon thyme
6 sage leaves
3/4 cup sherry vinegar
Salt and freshly ground pepper
Bring a large saucepan of water to a boil and prepare an ice bath. Cut a small X in the end of each tomato and drop them in the boiling water for 30 seconds. Using a slotted spoon, remove the tomatoes from the boiling water and drain, then submerge them in the ice water until cool. Peel, core and seed the tomatoes, then cut them into 1/4-inch cubes.
Peel the eggplants, halve them lengthwise and cut into 1-inch cubes.
In a large skillet, heat the olive oil. Add the eggplant and sauté over medium-high heat, stirring regularly, until browned all over, about 7 minutes. Add the honey and cook for an additional 4 minutes. Stir in the crushed garlic and herbs and deglaze the pan with the sherry vinegar, scraping up any browned bits with a wooden spoon. Season with salt and pepper and stir in the Marrakesh spice blend. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook eggplant, stirring frequently, until the eggplant is softened, about 6 to 7 minutes.
Transfer the eggplant to a plate and add the diced tomatoes to the skillet. Cook the tomatoes over medium-low heat, stirring frequently, for 10 minutes. Discard the garlic and herbs and season to taste with salt and pepper.
Place the eggplant on a platter, pour the tomatoes and any accumulated liquid on top and serve.
• From Christian: You can make the recipe vegan by substituting silan for the honey. Or serve on toast with butter and a soft cheese for a tasty snack.
• It's also substantial enough to be a meal on its own with a starch and/or other vegetables. Try it with our Hawayej Rice.