Nowadays we strive to eat fresh organic foods. What better way to incorporate healthy foods in our system by making a sandwich! Even my toddler loves this sandwich in mini size. This mouth watering sandwich is definitely a winner to serve to your loved ones.
Eggplant & Basil/Mint Gourmet Sandwich
4 slices Restaurant Style Rye Sandwich Bread*
1 Large Eggplant
1 organic heirloom tomatoes,thinly sliced
½ red onion,thinly sliced
2 leaves of red Swiss chard,chiffonade
½ cup of basil-mint pesto, recipe follows:
4 cloves of garlic, coarsely chopped and tossed in 1 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
1 cup fresh basil leaves, washed and stemmed, and tightly packed into a measuring cup
½ cup fresh mint leaves, washed and stemmed, and tightly packed into a measuring cup
½ cup pine nuts or walnuts or almonds, lightly toasted
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 cup extra virgin olive oil
fine grind sea salt
ground black pepper
1 small bag Salt and Vinegar kettle Chips
No nutrition information available
1. To make the pan-fried eggplant:
Wash and cut the eggplant into thick circles. Steam in the steamer basket for 5-7min. (The eggplant is only being half-cooked at this point so the eggplant must still be firm and not soggy). Heat a non stick pan and add olive oil just enough to cover the pan about 1 tablespoon. Season one side of the eggplant with Eden Organic sea salt and Eden organic black pepper. Place the seasoned side down on the pan. Cook until brown and season the other side of the eggplant with salt and pepper. Flip the eggplant and cook until brown. Set aside and keep warm in 300F degree oven.
* Tip: Make sure the heat is on medium-high to prevent the eggplant from sticking. Alternatively, if you are making this sandwich for friends and family you can cut down the cooking time by simply roasting the eggplants by cutting it into circles. Add enough oil to coat the eggplant slices. Season with salt,pepper and about a pinch of sugar for caramelization. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and lay the eggplant circles down and bake at 450 degrees for about 15-20 min or until the eggplants are soft but still holds the circle shape.
2. To make the basil-mint pesto:
Heat a sauté pan or skillet over medium heat and, when it is hot, add the chopped garlic/olive oil mixture. Stir for 7 seconds and then remove the pan from the heat. (You only want to heat and “sweat” the garlic, not brown it.) This process helps to tone down the strong heat from garlic.
*Tip: You may omit this process if you like the strong garlic taste.
Place all remaining ingredients into the food processor or blender and add the heated garlic/oil mixture. Pulse or blend he mixture until all the basil and mint are broken down and the ingredients are evenly distributed. Run the processor or blender for an additional 5 to 10 seconds to make a bright green, pebbly-textured sauce, thin enough to spread easily but not so thin as to be runny. Adjust the thickness by adding more olive oil and lemon juice if it’s too thick, or more nuts if it’s too thin.Finish by seasoning the pesto with salt. Adjust the seasoning to your liking.
Assembling the Sandwich:
Heat a non stick pan over medium heat. Drizzle one side of the sandwich bread with olive oil and season with black pepper. Place the seasoned side of the bread down and toast for about 2-3 min. or until golden brown. Repeat the procedure of the other side. Do this process on all of the bread slices. Spread pesto sauce on one side of the bread. Place organic heirloom tomatoes,onions,Swiss chard, and eggplant. Take another toasted slice of bread and spread pesto sauce on one side and place it on top of the eggplant. This process will be much faster with an aid of a panini maker or griddler. Cut the sandwich in half and serve it on a plate with salt and vinegar flavor kettle chips. You may also put the chips inside of the sandwich. Share with family and friends and enjoy!