Stuffed Eggplants with Pomegranate & Tahini
Prep time: 20 minutes Cook time: 40 minutes Serves: 4-6
3 small eggplants, halved 2 T. extra virgin olive oil ½ medium red onion, diced 1 medium red bell pepper, diced Sea salt and black pepper, to taste 2-3 garlic cloves, minced 2 T. tomato paste 2 t. ground cumin ½ t. ground cinnamon ¼ t. dried oregano ¼ t. red pepper flakes 1 15-oz. can crushed tomatoes, with liquid 1 15-oz. can chickpeas, rinsed and drained ½ c. plain Greek yogurt (full fat) 3 T. tahini 2 T. fresh lemon juice ½ c. pomegranate seeds ½ c. fresh parsley, chopped
Pre-heat oven to 400°F and line a large, rimmed baking sheet with a piece of parchment paper or baking mat.
Place the eggplant halves cut-side-down onto the prepared baking sheet and place in the oven to roast for 20 minutes or just until the eggplants begin to soften up.
In the meantime, heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and red pepper. Season with salt and black pepper, to taste, and stir to combine. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion becomes soft and translucent, approximately 4-5 minutes.
Add the garlic, tomato paste, cumin, cinnamon, oregano, and red pepper flakes. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the spices become fragrant, approximately 2 minutes.
Add the crushed tomatoes and chickpeas. Season with additional salt and black pepper, if desired, and stir to combine. Cover and simmer for 8-10 minutes.
After 20 minutes, remove the eggplants from the oven and flip so that the cut side is facing up. Once cool enough to handle, scoop out the seeded part from the eggplants and discard.
Stuff the eggplants with the warm chickpea mixture and return to the oven to roast for another 15-20 minutes, or until the eggplant flesh is really soft and the chickpea mixture is bubbly.
Meanwhile, whisk the yogurt with the tahini and fresh lemon juice in a small bowl. Season with salt and black pepper, to taste, and stir to combine. Set aside.
Remove stuffed eggplants from the oven and cool slightly. To serve, top each stuffed eggplant with a spoonful of the tahini dressing, pomegranate seeds, and some fresh chopped parsley. Enjoy!