This is, by far, one of my favorite recipes.
A twist on the typical “powerhouse” type of sandwich, which I also love. Whereas the veggies on a powerhouse aren’t cooked, they are for this recipe. It is as simple in construction as it is complex in flavor. It takes a bit of time to roast the veggies, but sooo worth it. At the rate I’m consuming the potted basil on my deck, there may not be any left for caprese salad by the time the tomatoes finally ripen!
Only my husband and I were eating dinner on this particular night, so I “halved” it and put the rest of the ciabatta in the freezer for a future time (the same for the remainder of the roasted red pepper). We shared the half, along with a couple of rockfish fillets that my brother caught a few days earlier. I dredged the fillets in a seasoned flour/egg wash/panko crust and then sauteed them on the grill burner so I could keep an eye on the veggies. Add to this a couple of cold beers and we had quite a summer spread.
Get ready for some somewhat sloppy eating. But again, quite worth it!
grilled eggplant, red pepper, basil, and mozzarella on ciabatta with garlic mayo
1/2 cup prepared organic mayonnaise
4 cloves fresh, mashed garlic
coarse sea salt and ground black pepper
one medium eggplant, sliced crosswise
2 red bell peppers
one loaf ciabatta bread, sliced in half lengthwise
1/2 pound fresh mozzarella
fresh basil leaves
Combine mayonnaise with mashed garlic in a small bowl and season with salt and pepper. Place in refrigerator at least 30 minutes before using.
Heat grill to high.
Brush eggplant slices on both sides with oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill until golden brown and cooked through, about 4 minutes. Brush red peppers with oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill until charred on all sides. Remove and place in a bowl. Cover and let steam for 10 minutes. Remove skin and seeds.
Place bread on top rack of grill until lightly crisp, about 30 seconds. Build your sandwich on the top rack of the grill. Layer bottom half of bread with eggplant, red pepper, fresh mozzarella and basil. Cover with top of bread and let sit for about 20-30 seconds until cheese is slightly melted. Serve with garlic mayo.