Roasted Eggplant Étouffée

Eggplant Etouffee

When May rolled in – particularly during third week of the month – my social networks swelled up with all the activities surrounding my alma mater’s commencement ceremony.  Lovely birrete art, the second lines and music that only come from New Orleans, and Maya Rudolph’s hilarious address.  It made me nostalgic for my own hectic graduation week, so I scoured the web and my own ‘archives’ for those memories from fifteen years ago.

On 2000, Tulane celebrated its second unified commencement ceremony for all the schools and colleges at the Louisiana Superdome.  Walter Isaacson – editor in chief of Time Magazine at the time – included these wise words in our class’ address.

So here is the first thing you should know about graduation day: every day hence, you will appreciate more how lucky you were to be at such a magical place.

Of course, he also told us not to screw the relatively peaceful turn of the millenium, spend some time on the road appreciating what the previous generation did before us, while ensuring our legacy for the next one.

I do appreciate my luck, even if my NOLA visits have been sparse since graduation and my shelf only includes two New Orleans cookbooks.  One is the gorgeous, memoir like My New Orleans by John Besh.  The other is the literally Little New Orleans Cookbook by Gwen McKee.  Armed with Besh’s rhapsodical descriptions of Creole ingredients and McKee’s practical recipes, I’ve conquered my cravings for those magical Crescent City flavors.  All this longing, topped with a great trip to the farmers market, inspired me to make a vegetarian etouffée.

Eggplants are right behind the lemongrass.

Etouffée literally translates to “smothered”.  If we gumbo is analogous to the Puerto Rican asopao, the etouffée’s equivalent in the island would be a fricassee or stew.  The etouffée is thickened with roux, the cooked flour and oil mixture that gives the dish body, plus that dark, nutty flavor associated with Cajun cuisine.


eggplant etouffee
Roasted Eggplant Étouffée
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Etouffee is a thick stew flavored with onions, celery, peppers and Cajun seasoning. The most popular etouffées are made with seafood, however, the cooking method translates well for vegetables. To add an extra layer of flavor, the eggplant is tossed in olive oil and roasted before it is incorporated into the stew.
Servings
2plus leftovers
Servings
2plus leftovers
eggplant etouffee
Roasted Eggplant Étouffée
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Votes: 0
Rating: 0
You:
Rate this recipe!
Etouffee is a thick stew flavored with onions, celery, peppers and Cajun seasoning. The most popular etouffées are made with seafood, however, the cooking method translates well for vegetables. To add an extra layer of flavor, the eggplant is tossed in olive oil and roasted before it is incorporated into the stew.
Servings
2plus leftovers
Servings
2plus leftovers
Ingredients
Roasted Eggplants
Étouffée
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 400˚F. Peel and chop eggplant into 1.5" cubes. Toss with olive oil and Cajun seasoning and place in a lined baking sheet on a single layer. Roast for 25 minutes.
  2. While the eggplant roasts, prep all the vegetables for the etoufée.
  3. In a large sautee pan, whisk together the flour and the vegetable oil to make a roux. Cook over medium high heat, whisking frequently until the roux reaches the color of milk chocolate. Immediately add the celery, peppers, onion and garlic and stir together with the roux. Reduce the heat to medium and cook the vegetables for about five minutes.
  4. Add the tomatoes and the water and stir to thicken up the étouffée. Toss in the roasted eggplant and bay leaf and season with the soy sauce and extra Cajun seasoning. Stir everything together and cook together over medium low heat for about fifteen minutes.
  5. Garnish with celery greens or green onions and serve with white rice.

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Author:Adriana

Adriana is a financial analyst by day, avid home cook in the evenings, and food blogger and runner in the strange hours between those two. When not in the kitchen concocting meals and stories to pass around, she is out looking for the next great bite (or the ingredients to make it at home), checking what's new at the market, or planning a trip around great food and wine.

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