Eggplant Fries (baked!) – a healthy side or snack – vegan/gluten free

Personally, I hate eggplants.  I bought a few wanting to make a recipe of vegan cheese using the eggplant puree as a base.  But as I was chopping up the first eggplant, I realized I really wasn’t going to need two.  So alas, I hit the interwebs and searched for a recipe that I wouldn’t totally hate, that involved eggplants.  I don’t like the texture of eggplants or the flavor….. however…. this recipe is making me a believer.  I based this recipe from the one here, which features an almond crusted Japanese eggplant.  Typically, Japanese eggplants aren’t as bitter, so I was worried that using normal eggplants would yield an icky result – so I made them more into fries rather than nuggets.  Because I figured when in doubt, the more coating the better ::shrugs::

My amounts might be off on the amount of flour, I didn’t measure anything I actually ended up running out and making a little more – which you can do, it’s really quite simple. Just eyeball the amount you think you’d need, it’s actually a little more than you’d think.

I used a blend of flours because I didn’t have quite enough almond meal to use JUST that, but I like blending flours anyway, I think it gives them a better texture and flavor.  You can use whatever flours (well within reason) you want, but just ensure your almond flour reigns most predominant, this adds a nice crunch at the end.

The finished product is a crunchy, super savory, delicious fry with a tender soft inside, that you would never even guess is eggplant.

Ingredients

  • About 1/2 C Almond Meal
  • 1/4 C Garbanzo Bean Flour
  • 1/6 C Rice Flour
  • Seasonings of choice (go heavy here, this gives the coating a nice flavor): I opted for a blend of italian seasonings, garlic, onion, basil, oregano etc.
  • 1 Large Eggplant
  • Few Tablespoons EVOO
  • 1 T Apple Cider Vinegar
  • Juice of 1 Lemon
  • Salt

Directions

  1. Preheat your oven to 425F
  2. Mix together your almond meal, rice and garbanzo bean flour, season well and pour onto a large flat plate.
  3. Whisk together EVOO, Vinegar, Lemon and Salt until blended well.
  4. Peel the eggplant (annoying but doable) and cut into fry sized thin pieces (don’t go TOO thin, think thin steak fries)
  5. Dip each eggplant piece in the oil/vinegar bowl, then roll it over the flour mixture, coating well, rolling back and forth as needed to get a nice thick coat.  Place on a foil lined baking pan.
  6. After you’ve done this for all the pieces, drizzle with a bit of oil (You’ll probably have some leftover from your mixture) place in oven for about 12 – 15 minutes, keep an eye on them, don’t let them burn.
  7. Flip them once, then finish cooking for about 10 minutes, maybe less.  Remove when crispy, you may see a few browner than desired, but most should be perfect.
  8. Let cool a bit, serve with any dip of choice, or eat plain

I ate mine with a sauce made of coconut milk, prik khing paste and a bit of rice vinegar…. but i’m weird 🙂 

Image

Advertisements