Sunday Supper: Jumbo Prawns Over Grilled Eggplant and Avocado Salad With Basil Infused White Peach Sangria

Please don’t be scared of the “E” word above. Eggplant can be really good if properly prepared and I don’t want you to turn up your nose at this one like I did. I poo-pooed it until I tried it and now I love it! Did you know that eggplant is really a fruit? Technically, it’s a berry. There are numerous varieties of eggplant ranging in shapes and colors of black, purple and white. Many can be found at your local market. My favorite variety to date is the Japanese eggplant which is what I prefer to substitute below.

Now that we are past the “E” word let’s move onto the good stuff. This will be one of the easier Sunday Suppers for you to make. As the sun continues to blaze and the temperatures rise, the last thing anyone wants to do is cook over a hot stove so this recipe will keep you cool while keeping you sane. I used one of Bobby Flay’s recipes from foodnetwork.com for part of this dish. After all, he is the grill master. I suggest that you make the sangria 2 hours ahead of time for best flavor.

What you will need for supper:

Mixed salad greens and baby spinach

jumbo prawns shells on (3 per person or according to taste)

Japanese or Italian eggplant

red onion

canola oil

avocado

1 T. red wine vinegar

1 t. Dijon mustard

1 T. fresh oregano leaves coarsely chopped (if you don’t have access the fresh oregano, you can use dried but use a very small amount at a time as it can be stronger in flavor)

honey

salt & pepper

lemon

What you will need for the sangria:

1 bottle of viognier (keep in mind: crappy wine=crappy sangria; choose accordingly)

1/4 c. Cointreau

Equal parts white sugar and water for simple syrup (you will only use 1/4 c. of this in the sangria)

fresh basil leaves

Fresh fruit: Mango, white peaches, pink lady apples

What to do for Sangria:

There are two tricks to making a great sangria. Make sure that it is cold when serving and the fruit has had time to soak up the alcohol. Let’s get to it!

Make your simple syrup first as it will need time to cool. I would probably use a cup of water and a cup of sugar. You can always use simple syrup! Just remember to set the remainder aside before infusing with the basil. Bring water to a boil on the stove. Turn off heat and add equal part white sugar and stir to dissolve. Add basil leaves and let rest off of the heat. Cut fruit into slices, chunks or what ever shape your heart desires just make sure that they will fit in the wine glass and not be difficult to eat. Place in a pitcher. I recommend a glass pitcher; it will show off all of your hard work and present the bright fruit best. Add the bottle of viognier and the Cointreau to the pitcher. Stir in simple syrup and refrigerate until ready to serve.

What to do for supper:

Get the grill nice and hot. Slice the eggplant into one inch thick slices and the red onion into large rounds. Brush with the canola oil and place on the grill. Cook them until the onions has a slight char and the eggplant is soft. Remove from grill and let rest on a cutting board. Meanwhile, dice up the avocado into large chunks disposing of the skin and pit and place in a medium sized bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together the Dijon, oregano, a dab of honey, red wine vinegar, salt & pepper and olive oil. If you like a sweeter dressing, add more honey and vice versa.Your dressing can be made ahead of time to intensify flavors.

Prepare your jumbo prawns for the grill by brushing with canola oil and season with salt and pepper. Set aside while you prepare the salad. The prawns only take four minutes to grill. Your grilled vegetables will probably be slightly cooled at this point. Roughly chop and add to the avocado bowl. Mix in dressing. In a large bowl, add salad greens and baby spinach. Pour in the eggplant avocado mix and toss. Plate the salad mix into individual bowls or into a presentation bowl if serving family style. The grill will be very hot at this point which is perfect for grilling the prawns. Cook for two minutes on each side or until just cooked through. Place prawns on top of the salads and serve.

Enjoy!

Cyn

Comments

  1. Thank you!

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