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Sesame-Eggplant Salsa
This was inspired by a similar dish served at the now defunct China Moon restaurant in San Francisco. Serve the salsa with Parmesan-Pita Chips.


2 1-to 1 1/4 lb eggplants

Preheat oven to 425F. Pierce eggplants all over with fork. Place on baking sheet. Roast in oven until eggplants are very soft and deflated, turning once, about 1 hours. Cool slightly. Cut eggplants in half; scrape flesh into strainer set over large bowl (do not allow bottom of strainer to touch bowl). Let eggplant drain 30 minutes. Transfer to processor. Using on/off turns, process until almost smooth.

1 Tbs vegetable oil
3/4 cup (packed) plus 1 Tbs minced green onions
2 1/2 Tbs minced peeled fresh ginger
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp chili-garlic sauce
3 Tbs (packed) brown sugar
2 Tbs soy sauce
1 Tbs rice vinegar
2 tsps fresh lemon juice
2 large plum tomatos, seeded, chopped
3/4 cup (packed) plus 1 Tbs finely chopped cilantro
1 1/2 tsps sesame oil


Heat vegetable oil in heavy large skillet over medium-high heat. Add 3/4 cup green onions, ginger, garlic and chili-garlic sauce; saute just until onions soften, abut 45 seconds. Stir in brown sugar, soy sauce, vinegar and lemon juice. Bring to simmer, stirring constantly. Mix in eggplant puree and cook until heated through, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in tomatoes, 3/4 cup cilantro and sesame oil. Cool to room temperature. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer to medium bowl. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate. Bring to room temperature before serving.

Garnish eggplant salsa with 1 Tbs each of green onions and cilantro.

Yield: About 4 cups

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