Steamed Eggplant with Buttermilk-Thyme Dressing

This image courtesy of Joseph DeLeo

Steamed food is a bit of a miracle to me. These little strips of eggplant cook in a flash, retaining all their character and goodness, ready to absorb a generous sprinkling of sharp, minced raw garlic and the soothing Buttermilk-Thyme Dressing.

NotesWords on Wine: “Gigondas wine tastes like a postcard from the village, all black cherries, licorice, rosemary, and thyme.”

Fabrice Langlois, sommelier at Château du Beaucastel in Châteauneuf-du-Pape

4 servings

Cooking Methodsteaming



Total Timeunder 30 minutes

One Pot MealYes

Recipe Courseside dish

Dietary Considerationvegetarian


Five Ingredients or LessYes

Mealdinner, lunch

Taste and Texturegarlicky, herby, savory, tart

Type of Dishvegetable


  • 2 to 3 small, elongated, Asian-type eggplants (about 1 pound)
  • 4 plump, moist cloves garlic, peeled, halved, green germ removed, minced
  • Fine sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons Buttermilk-Thyme Dressing
  • A steamer


  1. Cut the eggplants lengthwise—from stem end to bottom—into very thin slices. Do not peel.

  2. Bring 1 quart water to a simmer in the bottom of a steamer. Place the eggplant slices—slightly overlapping—on the steaming rack. Place the rack over the simmering water, cover, and steam until the eggplant is soft and cooked through, about 15 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer the slices to a large platter. Sprinkle with the garlic, season with salt, and drizzle with the dressing. Toss gently to coat the eggplant. Serve immediately. This dish should be eaten warm.

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