French Fridays with Dorie: Eggplant "Tartine" and the Return of the Prodigal Dorista

Friday, September 7, 2012


It's been more than a month since my last post for FFwD. In normal life, this is not such a long period. In the blogosphere, though, is nothing less than an eternity. Just consider how many clicks and unique visitors I've missed during this past month of cyber inertia...

Who cares, though, really? Not me. I was on vacation and vacation for me means vacating my life and mind of all the things I do everyday. It doesn't matter if these are activities that I actually enjoy, like cooking, photography, maybe writing, I need to get away from them, forget them and rediscover them when I come back. I spent 20 days going to the beach, swimming morning and afternoon, reading Murakami's 1Q84 and sleeping, a lot... I know that this is a type of "luxury" not available to everyone, especially in these challenging times, but you have to agree that the guilt free sleep of vacation, when you don't have to get up to go to work or do any errands is priceless. 

What is also priceless about vacation is that it ends. Don't frown. Take it from me, someone who's been on a non intended, semi-permanent vacation (it's really called unemployment but this word is so unimaginative and crushing) for the best of 7 years now. Vacation is meant to be short and sweet, like a chocolate fondant. A precious something that you cannot have everyday so that you savour every tiny bit of it. Even the best chocolate in the world would seem tasteless and even make you puke if you ate it by the bucket-full every day. Now that my box of Valrhona truffles finished I feel a sweet longing for them. I crave the peacefulness of midday naps in the shade by the sea. I am content, though, and wait for next year's delivery. 

Today's recipe has nothing to do with chocolate, but it has everything that my family and I have been eating for the past month. Eggplants (that's aubergines in my part of the world), tomatoes, olives, cucumber, capers. It is my summer in a plate ! I loved every bit of it. 

To see how other bloggers made the "Eggplant Tartine", check out French Fridays with Dorie where we make recipes from Dorie Greenspan's "Around my French Table".

25 comments:

  1. Lovely tartine! Looking forward to reading your other posts - have been on a 5 month blogging vacation myself, though I was mostly gardening and working.

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    1. Thank you very much :) I love gardening... today I planted a small herb garden to get me through fall...it felt so good and reinvigorating!!!

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  2. I loved that this dish was a little celebration of all the vegetables of summer, too. Glad you had a great vacation - I agree, it's better as an oasis than a permanent state.

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    1. It was a great dish!!! I am going to make it again and again and again - OK, as long as I have aubergines :)

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  3. I hear you. I love cooking and good food, but I also like going to restaurants or have my kids cook. Glad you enjoyed this dish too. Hope to see more of you.

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  4. Great tartine! Vacations always come first, though. =D

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    1. You are right Yummy Chunklet :) Vacations always come first :)

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  5. We all need time to recharge, no?
    Your tartine looks great.

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    1. Thank you Cher :) We definitely do. Thankfully my time away did exactly that... recharge my batteries for a quite challenging winter :)

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  6. Beautiful, and beautiful dishware as well. We loved this...just screams summer freedom to me, making it again this weekend with a few variations I have seen others do, i.e. caramelizing onions and adding yellow tomatoes and black olives. Yahoo...living on the edge! Your summer sounds wonderful. I take time off as well, and not just a month, but I've done four in a row now so I might be back for good...who's to say this early? Hope you are having a great weekend!

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    1. Thank you Kayte :) There are so many variations you can do with this recipe :)I will try it again with roasted red peppers and feta cheese yummy :)

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  7. Your Post was very thoughtful as well as mindful. Isn't it always, be careful what you wish for? It seems, however, that you have recharged and are ready for what the future presents to you. Your photos were lovely and your tartine certainly presented itself well in your dishes. Very nice.

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    1. Thank you so much Mary :) I remember before my "semi-permanent vacation" period started I always wished I could be able to be on vacation all the time...and I got just that :) Now I'm am wishing for it to end soon and I hope that my wish is granted again because now I know and appreciate the importance of every period in our life.

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  8. Delicious and summery looking aubergine tartine, indeed summer on a plate! I like your idea of "sandwiching" the salsa between two layers of aubergine - very imaginative! And I enjoyed reading your post very much.

    Have a good weekend!

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    1. Thank you Andrea :) I really, really liked yours as well...Your blog is beautiful!!

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  9. Your tartine looks great Maria. I've been on a bit of a blogging break myself but I miss everyone when I'm not connected. Aren't vacations wonderful?

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    1. They certainly are Guyla! I hope you enjoyed your break as much as I enjoyed mine :) I also missed cooking and connecting with everyone...it feels great to be back :)

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  10. Welcome back! Beautifully done, Maria!

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  11. You dish looks wonderful. So happy you enjoyed your first recipe back (even if it wasn't chocolate). And delighted that you enjoyed your vacation! Lovely.

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    1. Thank you Candy.! I think this was the perfect timing for this recipe...keep the summer mood and food going for a bit longer to ease us into fall :)

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  12. Welcome back from vacation. Your aubergine (much nicer word than eggplant) looks delicious. 20 days at the beach sounds wonderful, and how was Q184?

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    1. Thanks Betsy :) I love this word ! 1Q84 is really nice, quite long and kinda strange but this is how it is in Murakami's world :) It was a good choice for a summer read.

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  13. you must be an eggplant lover, making a sandwich instead of the open-faced tartine! yes, savoring vacation's even more important than savoring meals!

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