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Eggplant Dip with Roasted Red Peppers
1 large eggplant
1 small red (or other color) bell pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 medium yellow onion, grated (or finely minced)
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 teaspoon dried cumin
2 Tablespoons lemon juice
2 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground pepper
Chopped fresh flat-leaved parsley
Lemon slices for garnish (optional)
Crusty bread or pita wedges
To smoke the eggplant and roast pepper: pierce the eggplant several times with a fork. Place both eggplant and pepper over flame on a grill and cook, turning occasionally, until the skin on each is blackened. The pepper will only take a few minutes per side. Leave the eggplant on the grill for 20-25 minutes, so it can develop a very smoky flavor. You could do this under the broiler, but they won't get the same smoky flavor.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake eggplant until the flesh is really softabout 20 minutes. Cool. Remove skin from eggplant and squeeze flesh gently in paper towels to remove any excess moisture.
Remove the skin, stem, seeds, and ribs from pepper and finely dice. Set aside.
In a food processor or blender, pulse the eggplant flesh a few times. Add garlic, onion, oregano, cumin and lemon juice. With motor running, add the olive oil in a steady stream. Season with salt and pepper and pulse a few more times.
Place into a bowl and gently stir in the pepper. Let sit at room temperature for an hour.
To serve, place in a serving bowl, sprinkle with the parsley, add lemon garnish (if desired), and serve with bread or pita.