Bobby Flay’s Grilled Eggplant Dip

Handsome and a good cook. Both things I aspire to!

Serves: 8 as part of a share platter

Bobby Flay isn’t a household name in Australia though the reverse is true in America where he is a superstar of cooking.

I first heard about him on Iron Chef America and despite his good looks and cool swagger, this is not a man you want to challenge in the kitchen. From memory, he never lost a challenge.

Anyway, this is his eggplant dip and whilst there is a little effort to it, it has a subtle, sophisticated and really fine flavour to it. I grilled some Turkish bread brushed will olive oil and served that with the dip and that Oliver had five in quick succession tells you volumes.

Impress your mates and serve this up fresh next time they’re around. Better still if you have good looks and cool swagger.

P.S. I didn’t oil the vegetables to cut down on calories and I saw no downside. Except less calories! Oh, and really do try to serve this fresh or if refrigerated, allow time to come back to room temperature and give a good stir to combine.


1 red pepper (capsicum)
¼ c canola oil
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
1 large or 2 medium eggplant, ends trimmed and sliced lengthwise, 2cm thick
2 cloves garlic
¼ c tahini
¼ c Greek (fat-free) yoghurt
¼ c extra virgin olive oil
Grated zest of 1 lemon
1 tbsp chopped, fresh oregano
1 tsp hot smoked paprika
¼ c chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
Pita breads or Turkish breads, brushed with olive oil, heated on the grill to serve


  1. Heat a grill to medium. Brush the red pepper with some of the canola oil and season with salt and pepper. Brush the eggplant slices on both sides with more of the canola oil and season with salt and pepper.
  2. Grill the eggplant until charred on the first side; around 3 minutes. Turn and continue grilling until tender; around 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer to a chopping board.
  3. Grill the red pepper, turning occasionally until charred all over and tender; around 15 minutes. Transfer to a bowl, cover tightly with cling wrap and let steam while you make the eggplant puree.
  4. Smash the garlic cloves, sprinkle them with salt and mash and smear them to a paste using the side of a knife.
  5. Remove the skin from the eggplant and transfer the flesh to a food processor. Add garlic paste, tahini, yoghurt, 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and the lemon zest, oregano and smoked paprika. Process until smooth and thick. Add salt to taste and transfer to a serving bowl and let sit for at least 15 minutes to allow the flavours to meld.
  6. Peel, seed and dice the red pepper.
  7. Drizzle the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil over the dip (I gave this a miss), top with the diced peppers and chopped parsley and serve with the warm pita, lavash or grilled Turkish bread.

Keftethes (Greek parsley meatballs)

Serves: 4 – 6

I just love these meatballs. And who doesn’t love mince.

The red wine vinegar and oregano adds an really interesting element and contrasts really nicely with the golden outsides and soft, medium-rare inside of the meatballs.


Serve with a green salad and some pan-fried brussel sprouts and there is Wednesday night in the bag!


1kg ground beef
1/3 c dry breadcrumbs
½ c milk
1 onion, finely chopped
1 c (or more) chopped parsley
3 tbsp olive oil
2 egg yolks (or 1 egg)
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsps salt
pepper to taste
2 tbsp butter
6 tbsp (or more) red wine vinegar
1 tbsp (or more) dried crumbled oregano


  1. Soak the breadcrumbs in the milk until soft.
  2. Saute the onion and parsley in 2 tablespoons olive oil until limp.
  3. Mix together thoroughly with the meat, egg yolks, breadcrumbs, garlic, salt and pepper.  Shape into 1-inch balls and chill.
  4. Sauté the meatballs in the remaining tablespoon of olive oil and the butter, browning on all sides, and then remove any excess fat from the pan.
  5. Pour the vinegar into the pan, and sprinkle with the oregano.  Heat for a few minutes, scraping up the browned drippings. Repeat with more vinegar and oregano for a stronger taste.

Eggplant Chips

Serves: 4 – 8 snacking guests

The most important thing about this rather simple dish is not that it is low in carbs, nor that the chips taste great.

No, the most important thing is that you get the eggplant slices as dry as you can.

Because as we know, good chips are dry chips. If need be, bake a little longer than instructed to get them golden.

And enjoy!


6 baby eggplants
2 tbsp sea salt
Oliver oil cooking spray
1 c no-fat Greek-style yoghurt
1 small Lebanese cucumber, finely chopped
1 small garlic clove, crushed
½ tsp finely grated lemon rind
1 tbsp finely chopped fresh dill
1 tsp extra virgin olive oil


  1. After washing the eggplants, slice the eggplants into thinish discs.
  2. Place the eggplant discs on a tray and sprinkle with sea salt. Set aside for 30 minutes to remove excess moisture.
  3. Heat the oven to 180c and line a baking tray with baking paper.
  4. Pat the eggplant slices with paper towel to remove any excess moisture and salt. Place the eggplant discs on the baking tray, spray both sides of the eggplant discs with the oil and bake for 15 minutes or until golden and crisp.
  5. Meanwhile, combine the yoghurt, cucumber, garlic, lemon rind and dill in a bowl to make the tzazziki dip.
  6. Season and drizzle with a little olive oil if you wish.