Updated Tuesday, August 13th, 2013
Total Time: 1 hour, 20 minutes
Hands On Time: 1 hour
Yield: 8 servings
Matt loves making this grilled eggplant and potato salad in the summer. “It’s an ideal side dish, and well suited for anything,” he said, “but it pairs particularly well with this grilled squid dish, and the tangy aioli.”
Prepare your grill for direct heat: If using a charcoal grill, pour about 80 briquettes into a chimney starter and light it. When the briquettes are coated with ash, pour them into the bottom grate in an even layer. If you’re using a gas grill, simply set the burners to high heat.
While the grill is heating up, make the aioli: Put the garlic, mustard, and egg in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a blade attachment. Process until evenly combined, about 10 seconds. With the motor running, slowly add the olive oil in a thin stream, followed by the grapeseed or vegetable oil, until completely combined, about 2 minutes. Stop the processor, add the lemon juice, season with salt, and pulse until thoroughly mixed. Stop and scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula, then pulse until all ingredients are evenly incorporated. Let sit for at least 30 minutes before using. Refrigerate in a container with a tight-fitting lid for up to 3 days.
Now prepare the vegetables for the salad: Scrub the potatoes, then dry them. In a large bowl, toss the potatoes with the eggplant, herbs, garlic, oil, and salt and pepper. Once the grill is nice and hot (around 425°), spread the potatoes out in one layer on an aluminum rimmed baking sheet or baking dish, and roast for about 15 minutes with the grill cover on. Take them out of the grill, turn them a few times so they cook more evenly and don't burn, then return them to the grill, covered, to cook for another 10 to15 minutes (a total of 25-30 minutes roasting time). Once the potatoes are done, the skins will be wrinkly and browned, and a fork or knife should slice through the potatoes easily.
At this time, grill off the baby eggplant directly on the cooking grate until they’re tender, 7 to 9 minutes; toss them with the potatoes.
Toss the squid with the remaining 2/3 cup olive oil, the lemon juice, and plenty of salt and pepper. Thread on wooden skewers and flash grill, over a high heat, until slightly charred- and perfectly cooked, just 30-40 seconds. Set aside.
To serve this dish: on a large serving platter, make some dots of the aioli, and carefully place the grilled squid and vegetables around the plate. Garnish with slices of the tomatillo, and the green & purple basil. Serve immediately.
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