Persian Eggplant and Tomato Stew (Khoresh Bademjan) | The Jewish Week | Food & Wine

Persian Eggplant and Tomato Stew (Khoresh Bademjan)

Persian Eggplant and Tomato Stew (Khoresh Bademjan)

Courtesy Miri Rotkovitz

4 servings

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For the Eggplant and Tomato Stew

1 1/2 pounds (about 1 large or 3 to 4 small) eggplant, stemmed, peeled, and cut into 1-inch pieces


1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

1 large yellow onion, trimmed, peeled, and finely sliced

3 large cloves garlic, peeled, smashed, and finely chopped

1 teaspoon cumin

1/2 teaspoon turmeric

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon sea or kosher salt

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 (28-ounce) can whole peeled tomatoes, drained

1/2 cup water

1/4 cup pomegranate molasses, store bought or homemade

pinch saffron (optional)

cooked rice, quinoa or couscous

For the Yogurt Herb Sauce (Optional)

1 (6 to 7-ounce) container plain regular or Greek yogurt

1/4 cup chopped fresh dill

2 to 3 cloves garlic, smashed, peeled, and finely chopped

Pinch sea or kosher salt (optional)


Place the eggplant in a large colander set over a bowl. Sprinkle with a generous pinch or two of sea or kosher salt and set aside. In a Dutch oven or large chef's pan set over medium high heat, warm the 1/4 cup oil. Add the onion and saute until it is soft and translucent, and beginning to brown in spots, about 7 to 9 minutes. Add the garlic, cumin, turmeric, cinnamon and salt, and saute until the onions are coated and the spices are aromatic, about 1 minute more. Add the eggplant to the pan (if it has released a lot of liquid, pat it dry with paper towels or a clean tea towel first). Drizzle with 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Saute, turning to coat the eggplant in the onion and spice mixture, until the eggplant turns tender and shrinks in volume, about 8 to 10 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes, using the spoon to break them apart into large chunks. Add the water, pomegranate molasses, and saffron, if using. Stir well. Bring to a simmer, reduce the heat to low, and cook covered for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Serve hot over rice, quinoa or couscous. Top with the optional yogurt herb sauce, plain yogurt, and/or fresh chopped herbs, if desired. To make the optional yogurt sauce: In a small bowl, mix together the yogurt, dill, garlic and salt, if using. Refrigerate, covered, until ready to serve.

Reprinted from The Spruce with permission by the author.