This Roasted Eggplant with Creamy Harissa and Pistachios is the perfect vegetarian side dish.  You will love this Middle Eastern-inspired recipe. It's so filling, healthy, and the perfect side.

Roasted Eggplant with Creamy Harissa and Pistachios

 Oh hello, you delicious roasted eggplant!

Are you with me on the whole eggplant is amazing thing? It's one of those rare vegetables that, once it's well roasted, transforms into something rich, decadent and almost meaty tasting. I put it in the category of roasted cauliflower and sautéed mushrooms. It's a vegetable, of course, but only sort of.

This recipe has made me realize that there are not enough eggplants in my life. Other than throwing them into every Thai curry I've ever made, and occasionally tossing them on the bbq, I rarely ever make them. That's going to change. Like, starting today. I hope you guys like eggplants too!

For this recipe, I've made a simple sauce made with goat cheese and harissa that is spread on the eggplants after they're well roasted. The goat cheese calms the spice of the harissa so what you're left with is creamy, flavor-packed amazingness.

Then there are the pistachios. I ♥♥♥ pistachios! Don't skip them!

Roasted Eggplant with Creamy Harissa and Pistachios

You might notice when you go to make the sauce that I've said you can either add oil or water. Say what?! I feel like I need to explain …

You see, over the past few years, there's been this thing that's happened. It's been creeping up so slowly that I hardly even noticed it. It's this 10 lb. thing, and it's not sitting so well with me. I'm mean really, I eat pretty darn well most of the time. Yes, I probably have too many bourbon sours and fish tacos, it's true. But 10 lb. worth of sours and tacos? Seems crazy.

Anyway, calories in/ calories out. Or so ‘they' say. Most of the time when I make this sauce I make it with olive oil, but not today. Today my My Fitness Pal app told me that would have put me over my daily allotment of calories.

Wait, what? Who am I? This whole calorie counting thing (CCT) is new to me and feels so strange!

Anyway, if you too are doing the CCT then choose the water option over oil. Or if you're a normal person just ignore everything I just said. 🙂

Roasted Eggplant with Creamy Harissa and Pistachios

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Roasted Eggplant with Creamy Harissa and Pistachios

Roasted Eggplant with Creamy Harissa and Pistachios

  • Author: Kristen Stevens
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 30 mins
  • Total Time: 40 mins
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x
  • Category: Side Dish
  • Cuisine: Middle Eastern

Description

This Roasted Eggplant with Creamy Harissa and Pistachios is the perfect vegetarian side dish.  You will love this Middle Eastern-inspired recipe. It's so filling, healthy, and the perfect side.


Scale

Ingredients

  • 2 large eggplants, cut in half lengthwise, then in half again
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt

Creamy Harissa Sauce

  • 2 tablespoons goat cheese
  • 12 tablespoons harissa paste
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil or water (see notes)
  • 1/2 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1 garlic clove, very finely minced
  • 1/4 cup shelled pistachios, finely chopped
  • Cilantro, for garnish

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 420 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Lay the eggplant slices, skin side down, on the prepared baking sheet, drizzle them with the olive oil and the sea salt. Roast the eggplants in the preheated oven for 30-35 minutes, or until they are soft and brown.
  3. While the eggplants are roasting, prepare the creamy harissa sauce. In a small bowl, mix together the harissa, goat cheese, olive oil or water, balsamic and the garlic.
  4. When you pull the eggplants out of the oven use a spoon to brush the tops with the creamy harissa sauce and sprinkle the pistachios over the top. Garnish with a little cilantro, if you'd like. Serve immediately.

Notes

Use water if you'd like to reduce the calories.