Welcome to the Storied Recipe Podcast! My podcast guest, Anisa shared this from her hometown of Odesa in Ukraine, from which she immigrated before the fall of the Soviet Union. Make sure you listen to her powerful episode, Siberia, Diamonds, and Clowns! The Story of a Ukrainian Jewish Refugee while you make her .
Listen to Anisa's Story
Anisa arrived in the US at 8 years old refugee from the former Soviet Union where her Jewish Ukrainian family suffered especially cruelly under their communist rule. Humor and amazing recipes are two of the legacies of Anisa’s family - and perhaps a secret weapon in their success.
This recipe takes me to the happiest of places: the large family gatherings we had with friends and neighbors. This was one of the few dishes my grandmother relinquished to my mother to make, and to be honest I still thinks hers are better than mine.
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This recipe is a collection of perfectly balanced contrasts - rich and savory vs. sharp and acidic
- Olive oil and Kosher Salt enhance - while vinegar complements - the earthy flavor of the eggplant and sharp radishes.
- The sweet flavors of red pepper contrast beautiful with a smokiness after charring.
- Vinegar cuts the the savory flavors of rich garlic and tomato sauce.
- Slice and salt eggplant slices; Sweat on paper towels until eggplants release extra moisture.
- Bake at 425°F
- Char red pepper for a smoky flavor. Peel and blend pepper with other ingredients.
- Heat, add vinegar, cool slightly.
- Spread red pepper and garlic paste.
- Roll eggplant slices, top with more paste, refrigerate overnight.
- Garnish with parsley and oil.
- Enjoy with rice, meat, or bread.
- Keeps well for 4 days, best next day.
- The acid is key to this ingredient. However, you could substitute plain vinegar with lemon juice, balsamic vinegar, or red wine vinegar.
- Fresh basil would work instead of parsley.
- Rollatini is among the most famous of all Italian recipes. Stuff with a layer of mozzarella cheese and top with tomato sauce. Or mix and match an Italian rollatini with some of the distinguishing characteristics of Ukrainian Roll Ups
- Georgian Eggplant Roll Ups are similar but include walnuts in the paste.
- A sharp knife will make it easier to cut the eggplants in ¼" slices.
- You'll need a large baking sheet to lay out the slices to sweat, roast, and roll.
- Anisa says you can store these up to four days in the fridge.
- They are best after 24 hours.
- These Ukrainian Eggplant Rollatini make the perfect side dish for grilled meat. Add a little rice or crusty bread
- Their sharp and acidic nature also make them the perfect appetizer to a rich or hearty main dish.
- Add these eggplant appetizer to an antipasto platter.
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