This Roasted Eggplant with Creamy Tahini-Miso Dressing is packed full of nutty, tart, umami-full flavor! Bonus? It comes together in under 15 minutes!
I initially made roasted eggplant with creamy tahini-miso dressing and it was perfection (cue angels singing, it is that delicious). But then I introduced some leftover dressing to a bowl of uninspiring brussels sprouts in the fridge and suddenly, true love was born. Call it a meet-cute of vegetables and umami.
Roasting eggplant on its own turns it from a slightly bitter, tough veggies into something that is velvety and sweet. But, when paired with this creamy tahini-miso dressing, roasted eggplant really sings.
The creamy dressing is a blend of salty umami flavors from the miso, nuttiness from the tahini paste, a touch of tart from a squeeze of fresh lime juice, and just enough light, sugary sweetness.
Roasted eggplant the right way, in two parts
To really get a good depth of flavor into the roasted eggplant before it’s brushed with that utterly creamy tahini-miso dressing, it’s most important to make the roasted eggplant in two parts; first, just a sprinkle of salt and a light addition of the dressing, which will help bring out the creamy texture of roasted eggplant while leaving the flavor of the dressing light. Then, brush on the rest of the tahini-miso dressing and roast the eggplant little more, which deepens the flavor of each and brings the whole dish together. If you wished, you could also double the creamy tahini-miso dressing, and then drizzle it cold on the hot eggplant after the dish is out of the oven, or just, you know, drink it straight with a straw, but that’s entirely up to you.
When shopping for eggplant, look for the small ones. Not only will a smaller eggplant cook faster than a large one, but the sweet, roasted flavor is easier to come by than the big ones, which sometimes take a while longer in the oven to lose the bitterness.
The final result? Roasted eggplant with creamy tahini-miso dressing that’s smooth, velvety, sweet and tart. It’s practically perfect in every way.
Preheat the oven to 425*F/218*C.
While the oven is heating, cut the top off the eggplant, then slice into pieces about 1/2"/1.27cm thick. You can cut the eggplant into thick strips, or you can slice it into steaks- just make sure the thickest part of the eggplant is no more than 1/2"/1.27cm thick. Lat the eggplant pieces on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper or aluminum foil.
Lightly sprinkle the eggplant with salt, then set aside while you make the dressing.
In a small bowl, combine the miso paste, tahini paste, sugar and lime. Use a fork or a small whisk to mix well; there likely will be lumps. Add the hot water a little at a time, whisking in between each addition, until the dressing is smooth. You may not need to use all the water.
Brush the tops of the eggplant lightly with the dressing, reserving the rest. Place the eggplant in the oven and roast for 5 minutes.
Remove the eggplant from the oven and brush with the remaining dressing. Place back in the oven and roast a further 5-8 minutes, until the eggplant is completely soft all the way through.
Remove and sprinkle with sesame seeds. Serve warm.
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