Taste Tested: Moroccan Eggplant & Halloumi

This eggplant dish is super tasty. Don’t believe us? Try it yourself! No penguins necessary.


“The incredibly versatile (and hilarious looking) eggplant works in everything from Italian to Asian dishes… but today, we’re taking this taste adventure to Morrocco. Eggplant can be over whelming, I know. It’s a bit odd — with it’s spongy inside, it’s purple shiny skin. I imagine it would help you make a martian feel at home, should one choose to visit you. But it’s got a texture and flavour profile that lends itself to almost anything you’re craving. This slightly sweet, slightly saucy recipe packs a whallop of flavour and the creamy fried cheese smooths it all out nicely. And really, who doesn’t like fried cheese?”


Moroccan Eggplant & Halloumi
Serves 2
Ontario eggplants are available almost all year long -- and served up in this sweet, sticky, spicy sauce they go from ho-hum to exotic, delicious, and unmistakably Moroccan.
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
25 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
25 min
  1. 4 small Ontario Chinese eggplants, halved
  2. 1 tbsp Salt
  3. 1/3 cup Pristine Gourmet cold pressed canola oil
  4. 2 tbsp Ontario honey
  5. Juice of 1 lemon
  6. 1 tbsp finely minced Ontario garlic
  7. 1 tbsp finely minced fresh ginger
  8. 1 tsp ground cumin
  9. 1/2 Ontario jalapeno or other chili, minced
  10. Handful chopped fresh cilantro, for garnish
  11. 1 round of Monforte Halloumi, cut into 1/2 inch slices
  1. Lay the slices of eggplant out on a towel or cloth and sprinkle all the cut surfaces generously with salt. Let the eggplant sit for about 15-20 minutes, then wipe the pieces dry with paper towels.
  2. Preheat a large, heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Brush both sides of each eggplant slice with oil and cook in the skillet, not overlapping the slices, until well browned on both sides. Remove the slices to a plate and set aside.
  3. Meanwhile, in a bowl combine the honey and lemon juice with about 2/3 cup hot water, stirring to dissolve.
  4. Heat your skillet again, add tbsp oil when hot. Fry halloumi slices until nicely browned, flip and repeat. Watch the cheese carefully -- it burns fast! Remove from heat and drain on paper towel.
  5. Add a little more oil to the pan. Add the garlic and ginger, stirring for about thirty seconds, then add the cumin and chili, stirring for about another thirty seconds. Stir in the honey-lemon water and bring everything to a boil.
  6. Lay the eggplant pieces into the pan, overlapping if needed, and cook over medium heat for about 10 minutes, turning the pieces as necessary to ensure all are coated with the sauce, until i
  7. t has been reduced to a thick glaze and the eggplant pieces are completely soft (add a bit more water if the sauce reduces before the eggplant is ready). Taste for seasoning and add salt as needed.
  8. Serve over fried halloumi, sprinkle with lemon zest and a handful of chopped cilantro.
  1. This saucy eggplant fry up is great served at room temperature with chunks of fresh bread too!
Culinary Tourism Alliance https://ontarioculinary.com/

About Taste Tested

From the farm to the table, it�s easy to be inspired by Ontario�s endless parade of edibles. With ?Taste Tested?, OCTA�s staff are sharing their freshest finds and dishing out their favourites of the season. Come discover what�s on our table � literally!

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