Cumin-Scented Eggplant with Pomegranate and Cilantro
- 5 cups water
- 2 1/2 tablespoons sea salt or kosher salt
- 2 pounds eggplant (about 2 medium), cut crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick slices
- 1 tablespoon (or more) olive oil
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2/3 cup pomegranate seeds
- 1/4 cup cilantro leaves
- Pomegranate Molasses (for drizzling)
- Stir 5 cups water and 2 1/2 tablespoons sea salt in large bowl to dissolve salt. Add eggplant slices. Place plate on eggplant to submerge; let soak 1 hour. Drain eggplant; pat dry.
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Working in batches, sauté eggplant until brown in spots and softened, 2 minutes per side. Transfer to large rimmed baking sheet. Repeat with remaining eggplant, adding more oil by tablespoonfuls as needed; arrange eggplant in single layer on baking sheet.
- Mix cumin and cayenne. Sprinkle eggplant with cumin mixture. Roast until golden and cooked through, 30 minutes.
- Remove eggplant from oven; sprinkle with garlic. Arrange eggplant on platter and drizzle with pomegranate molasses. Sprinkle pomegranate seeds and cilantro over. Serve warm or at room temperature.