Zaalouk (Moroccan Eggplant-Tomato Spread)
Recipe type: side, appetizer
Cuisine: Moroccan
Serves: 4-6 as an appetizer or small salad
  • 4 medium tomatoes, peeled, trimmed, and diced
  • 2 medium eggplants, trimmed and diced
  • 4 medium cloves garlic
  • 1 small bunch flat-leafed parsley, finely chopped (stems and all)
  • 1½ teaspoons paprika
  • 2 teaspoons cumin seeds, toasted until fragrant in a small frying pan
  • harissa to taste*
  • sea salt and black pepper to taste
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  1. Heat a large frying pan over medium heat. Drizzle olive oil on the bottom of the pan to thinly coat.
  2. Layer the vegetables in the pan as follows: tomatoes, eggplant, then parsley. Add another drizzling of oil over the vegetables. Increase the heat to medium-high. Cook, shaking the pan back and forth occasionally (to prevent sticking), until the tomatoes have released most of their juices.
  3. Thinly grate the garlic over top, and stir the vegetables to combine. Add the paprika, salt and pepper, and harissa to taste. Rub the toasted cumin seeds between your palms to release their aroma, then add to the pan and stir.
  4. Cover the pan, and cook over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally until the eggplant has softened and the tomatoes have almost broken down completely (The eggplant and tomato will have formed a paste with some remaining texture from the eggplant.) Serve warm or at room temperature, alone or with bread.
*Harissa is a spicy Moroccan chile paste, which can be found in some Middle Eastern markets and specialty stores. If you can't find it, chile-garlic paste (sambal oelek), cayenne powder, or crushed red pepper would make decent substitutions.
Recipe by Spoon With Me at