Patlican Salatası

Now that it is summer I have been craving some light salads.  I have also been away from Turkey long enough I have been craving Turkish food.  I was talking about this dish with my friend the other day and started drooling.  I will be making this soon.   It is pretty versatile.  If you want a side salad make it a little chunkier, if you want to use it as a dip blend it a little more, like salsa

Patlican Salatası

1 large eggplant or 3 or 4 smaller ones (I like the small ones myself)
1 or 2 cloves of garlic (mashed or pressed)
Juice of 1 lemon
1/4 cup of yogurt
A splash of olive oil*
1 tomato diced
Salt and pepper to taste

*optional

Poke holes in the eggplant(s) before you roast them.  I use the grill but you could roast them on the grill, the stovetop (over the flames) or broil them in the oven.  Whatever the method-roast the eggplant until it is soft about a half hour or so depending on the size.  After they are done, let them cool and then peel off the skin.  Dice the eggplant small ad toss in a bowl.  Dice the tomato and throw that in the bowl too.  Mash one or two cloves of garlic, to taste, remember it will be in the salad raw.  Add that to the mix as well as the juice of the lemon the yogurt and the oil if you want it.  The oil makes it taster but without it the salad is pretty light calorically, cooked eggplant has about 35 calories per cup.  I also use light yogurt.  Add about a 1/2 tsp of salt to start with and a little pepper.  Salt to taste, you may want to add more salt (I do) but I do a little at a time or to my serving on my plate as I am always afraid to over salt the whole batch.

Mix well and chill, serve cold.  It is best served after an hour or two when the flavors have time to meld.

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