MNN Galleries

5 ideal treats to bring to a food swap

By: Enrique Gili on Aug. 6, 2012, 5:46 p.m.
Roasted Eggplant Red Pepper Dip

Photo: Enrique Gili

5 of 7

Roasted Eggplant Red Pepper Dip

A toothsome low-fat combo that goes the extra mile through roasting. Serving suggestion: Serve with pita bread or chips.
Roasted Eggplant Red Pepper Dip


  • 1 Italian eggplant, about 2 pounds, rinsed and stemmed
  • 2 red bell peppers, rinsed, stemmed and seeded
  • 1 red onion, peeled and chopped
  • 1 garlic head, top removed
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground paprika
  • Pinch ground cayenne pepper
  • 1 lemon, juiced
Time estimates

Prep time: 30 minutes

Total time: 1 hour 30 minutes

Cooking directions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Rinse and pat dry eggplant. Remove stem. Cut eggplant in half lengthwise. Cut deep lateral and cross-shaped patterns in flesh without piercing skin. Add salt to cuts. Set aside for 30 minutes.
  3. Squeeze eggplant over sink to remove excess liquid. Apply olive oil to surface area and cuts. Place eggplant flesh side down in baking dish and roast for 60 minutes. The eggplant is done when flesh and skin collapse, about 60 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool.
  4. Meanwhile, evenly chop onion and red pepper into small pieces.
  5. Wrap garlic head in aluminum foil. Place vegetables on shallow roasting pan, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  6. Place pan in oven and cook 20 to 25 minutes. At about 15 minutes, stir vegetables to ensure even cooking. Remove from oven and allow to cool.
  7. Unwrap garlic head; it should be soft and caramelized. Squeeze gently to remove cloves from papery jackets.
  8. Place eggplant and roasted vegetables in food processor. Process until a creamy paste forms, 2 to 3 minutes. Scrape down the sides with spatula.
  9. Add paprika and cayenne. Process until well blended, about 10 seconds. Add lemon juice.

Yield: Makes about 1 pint