Wait no more to welcome this delicious Turkish Eggplant Salad in your kitchen. Tomatoes, garlic, olive oil, fresh herbs, lemon come together with roasted eggplants to offer the yummiest taste. It’s vegan, gluten-free and super healthy!
Summer is finally here and it is the high time of eggplants. They are so fresh and have way more flavor at this time of the year. They are simply one of my favorite veggies with their deep purple color and texture when cooked. And this roasted eggplant salad with a simple olive oil and vinegar salad dressing brings the summer flavors on your table.
Eggplant Meze Ingredients
This roasted eggplant salad is a popular kind of Turkish meze. Mezes are the appetizers of Turkish cuisine and they are served before or with the main dish.
Garlic, lemon and olive oil are basics in Turkish mezes. These ingredients give the food so much flavor that most of the time people are already full by the time the main dish arrives. You can never stop eating more and more meze.
Here in this Turkish eggplant meze, the olive oil and vinegar salad dressing with garlic does the trick as well, which makes the salad irresistible. So, you can be generous with olive oil and lemon juice while making your salad. However, be careful with the garlic. As we use it raw here, too much of it makes the salad too strong.
The spices in the dressing here are black pepper and sumac. They help to bind all the flavors in the salad. If you are making it for adults only, you can add some hot red pepper flakes too.
As for the fresh herbs, I use parsley only because it goes really great with eggplants but you can use fresh dill and green onions or thyme if you like them more.
Tomato is optional, but highly recommended. I prefer to have it in my salad because summer tomatoes give the salad a super refreshing flavor.
Finally, pistachios enrich the eggplant salad with their nutty flavor and crunchy texture. Use whatever nuts you like or leave them out if you don’t want.
How To Make Roasted Eggplant Salad Turkish
There are three easy parts of this recipe.
First, roast the eggplants. Preheat oven to 375F. Then, with a fork, prick the eggplants in a few places randomly. Place them in a baking sheet and roast for about an hour. You should check them after 40 minutes to see if they are tender because this duration might change depending on the size of the eggplants. When cooked you can peel and chop them roughly.
Second, make the olive oil and vinegar salad dressing. In a small bowl, whisk together salt, black pepper, sumac, mashed garlic, olive oil, vinegar and lemon juice until smooth. Pour it over the eggplants and stir well.
Third, top the roasted eggplant with diced tomatoes and chopped parsley. We always love it with extra olive oil as a final touch, but it’s optional.
If you want to have it cold, keep it in refrigerator a few hours before serving. Otherwise that’s it! Your salad is ready!
If you are not vegan, this Turkish eggplant salad can also be served with Greek yogurt on the top. Roasted eggplants and yogurt pair up really well.
Ways To Roast Eggplants For Salad
You have a couple of options for roasting whole eggplants.
The first method is oven roasting. As I mentioned above, eggplants can be roasted whole well at 375F in oven within 40 minutes. You can roast them sliced too as in Anna’s amazing Garlic Parmesan Baked Eggplant Recipe.
The second method is stove top roasting. Place eggplants over the flames on the gas stove top. Roast them for 20-30 minutes, rotating occasionally until really soft and the skin gets charred. However, I have to say this method is a bit messy as the eggplants release juice around the burner when cooking.
The third method is roasting on the grill outside. Just make sure that the grill is not too hot. Place eggplants on it when it is at low heat. Otherwise, the skin of the eggplants burn before the flesh is completely cooked.
PRO TIP: No matter how you roast eggplants, remember to pierce the eggplants with a fork to have small holes where the steam can escape.
If you want to peel them easily, storing them in a plastic bag while hot will make the peeling process might be a good idea. It is easer to peel them this way. But I don’t think it’s necessary if they are wonderfully tender.
Israili Eggplant Salad Vs Turkish Eggplant Salad
Middle Eastern eggplant salad recipe has some differences depending on the country. Another popular eggplant salad in Middle Eastern cuisine is Israili eggplant salad.
Unlike our Turkish Eggplant Salad, eggplants are usually fried in the Israili version and combined with fried bell peppers. The fried vegetables are combined with a tomato sauce and cooked for the second time. This naturally brings more calories but as tasty as the Turkish version. Both cold eggplant salad recipes are always a hit as a dip. And leftovers taste even better.
Is Roasted Eggplant Salad Good?
Eggplant salad recipes deserve more room in the kitchen not only because of its fun color, unique texture and exquisite flavor but also for its health benefits.
Like many other vegetables, eggplants are very rich in dietary fiber, a basic part of any balanced diet. One cup of raw eggplants offers almost half of the fiber a person should consume each day. Fiber makes you feel full and have less calories since it moves through the digestive track slowly. High in fiber and low in calories, eggplants make a great contribution to a weight loss diet. Moreover, eggplants are known to boost general mental health and cognitive activity thanks to the phytonutrients they have. They are also very high in folic acid, which is highly recommended for pregnant women. In addition to all these benefits, eggplants contain a big amount of antioxidants as well.
So yes, this salad is definitely good for a regular diet.
Is Grilled Eggplant Salad Vegan?
Absolutely. This Turkish eggplant salad recipe does not contain anything non-vegan. Well, it is one of the best vegan salads that can be served as a satisfying lunch.
Turkish Eggplant Recipes
Eggplant recipes in Turkish cuisine like Imam Bayıldı, Turkish Stuffed Eggplant, also known as Karnıyarık or eggplant moussaka are in abundance in Turkish homes with the start of summer. I especially like eggplant salad recipes because they are very versatile. You can have these salads as a side dish, salad, light lunch, dip for your chips or a great filling sandwich spread.
Another eggplant meze I love much is Turkish Baba Ganoush. It is very similar to this very eggplant salad recipe. The only difference is that you roast peppers as well and blend them together with roasted eggplants until smooth.
Love roasting other veggies too? Check out our Oven Roasted Veggie Kabobs too!Print
Turkish Eggplant Salad Recipe
Roasted eggplant salad with a tangy olive oil and vinegar salad dressing and fresh tomato topping.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 40 minutes
- Total Time: 50 minutes
- Yield: 6 1x
- Category: Side Dish
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: Turkish
- 6 medium size eggplants
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes, diced
- 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
- 1 tablespoon pistachios
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon vinegar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon sumac
- 1 clove garlic, mashed
- Preheat oven to 375F.
- Using a fork, prick the eggplants in a few places randomly.
- Place them in a baking sheet and roast for about an hour.
- Check if they are tender enough after 40 minutes. This duration might change depending on the size of eggplants.
- Peel and chop them roughly.
- In a small bowl, whisk all the ingredients for dressing. Pour it over the roasted and chopped eggplants.
- Top with diced tomatoes, parsley and pistachios.
- Optionally, drizzle extra olive oil over the salad when serving.
Keywords: Turkish eggplant recipes, eggplant salad, roasted eggplant salad