Add escalivada to your summer rotation. Chef Josh Elliott’s version of the Catalan specialty features a hearty mix of vegetables like Japanese eggplant, red bell peppers, red onion and beefsteak tomatoes. It can be made in advance (in fact, Elliott encourages it — at least one to two days ahead of time) so it’s a top contender for summer entertaining. Serve yours alongside grilled country bread, olive oil and plenty of wine for a complete & memorable meal.
- 5 Japanese eggplants, pierced with a fork
- 2 red bell peppers
- 1 red onion, (med. large) cut into 1/4” wheels
- 2 beefsteak tomatoes, nicely ripe, cut in half
- 1/2 cup plus 1 cup olive oil
- 1/2 cup kosher salt plus 1 tbsp
- 1 teaspoon fennel seed
- 1 teaspoon coriander seed
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin seed
- 2 ounces sherry vinegar
- 2 teaspoon tobasco
- 2 teaspoon soy sauce
- Brush vegetables all over lightly with ½ cup olive oil using a pastry brush and season well with 1/2 cup salt on all sides.
- Add vegetables to the grill, if you have any flare up, just move the veg and spritz the flare with some water. Grill all vegetables until well colored and dark on all sides and nicely tender. Once grilled, remove the eggplant and bell peppers to a baking pan and cover with plastic wrap.
- Allow to steam for 15- 20 minutes then peel and rough chop everything to a similar size. Rough chop tomatoes and reserve all juice and pulp. Rough chop onions. Rough chop bell peppers to a similar size and reserve all juice and pulp.
- Combine all of these vegetables into a large mixing bowl and allow to come to room temperature.
- While the grilled vegetables are cooling down, preheat oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Toast the seeds on a baking pan for 3 minutes monitoring closely, careful not to burn them. Place in a mortar and pestle to crack the spices and get ready to mix.
- Combine the rest of the ingredients and additional salt and olive oil with all of the mixed vegetables, mix by hand and reserve until time to serve.
- Best made 1-2 days ahead, even better made about 1 week ahead of time. Store in refrigerator and return to room temperature to serve.
- Serve with grilled country bread and olive oil.