Grilled Stacked Mediterranean Eggplant

Grilled Stacked Mediterranean Eggplant

My fledgling tomato plants measure 16-inches tall–I just went outside with my ruler to double-check. So how is it possible Carpenter’s Greenhouse and Organic Produce(Allen, Michigan) is selling beautiful Michigan tomatoes at the Farmer’s Market?

“We begin germinating the tomato seeds in-house in January,” said Rich, one of the gentlemen who sold me the tomatoes at Wednesday’s Kerrytown Farmer’s Market. “When they are about 1-foot high, they are moved into the greenhouse. It costs us $400 a day to heat the greenhouse!” he added.

Fair enough, I thought, fishing $2.75 out of my bag. I’m more than happy to shell out the cash for two big, juicy locally-grown tomatoes, not to mention the luxury of savoring Michigan-grown tomatoes in May.

I purchased an eggplant from the People’s Food Coop, about the same width as the tomatoes to use for stacking. A slice of fresh mozzarella would be also delicious sandwiched into the deck; if using fresh mozzarella, eliminate the feta. (Note: While I’ve got the grill going, I’m also grilling zucchini, tomatoes, fennel and onions for tomorrow’s dinnerFeed of Chilled Grilled Vegetable Soup.)

Recipe: Grilled Stacked Mediterranean Eggplant


  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil plus extra for brushing eggplant slices
  • 2 teaspoons tapanade or olivada* (olive-based spread)
  • 1 globe eggplant, striped with a vegetable peeler 1 large red tomato, cut into 1/2-inch slices
  • 1 large yellow tomato, cut into 1/2-inch slices
  • 6-8 large basil leaves, washed
  • 2-3 ounces feta cheese, cut into small cubes or crumbled


  1. Combine oil and tapanade. Set aside.
  2. Slice eggplant into 1/2-inch slices. Lay slices on a baking sheet lined with paper towels, lightly sprinkle with kosher salt, and let excess moisture drain 30 minutes.
  3. Prepare a gas or charcoal grill to medium to medium-high heat.
  4. On a well-oiled grill grate, grill eggplant slices 4-6 minutes per side, brushing with additional olive oil, until tender and golden brown. (You may also roast the slices in a preheated 425° oven.)
  5. Lightly season tomato slices with kosher salt, if desired, and freshly ground pepper. To make stacks, layer in this order: 1 eggplant slice, 1 yellow tomato slice, 2 basil leaves, 1 eggplant slice, finishing with 1 red tomato slice.
  6. Spoon a bit of the reserved oil and olivade mixture on tomato top. Sprinkle with feta and serve.

*Trader Joe’s sells a good kalamata tapanade, which keeps for months, refrigerated.

Time: 25 minutes

Number of servings (yield): 3-4 eggplant-tomato stacks

Copyright © Peggy Lampman’s dinnerFeed.

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