Eggplant and Tomato Hobo Pack

If you want to make delicious, slightly unusual side dishes without a lot of work, hobo packs are for you. Just assemble the foil package, slide it into the coals, and let it cook while you make the rest of the meal on top of the grill grid. This combination of eggplant and tomatoes is a classic pairing found throughout the Mediterranean world, and for good reason—the rich eggplant and sweet-tart tomato complement each other perfectly. Add a little garlic, onion, oregano, and hot pepper, and you’ve got a super-tasty side dish that goes with just about any meal. It’s also a delicious vegetarian entree for two.

Recipe courtesy of "Grill It!" by Chris Schlesinger and John Willoughby, copyright 2008. Used by permission of DK Publishing. All rights reserved.

Eggplant and Tomato Hobo Pack

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    Ingredients

    2 small eggplants, unpeeled, cut into 2 in (5 cm) cubes 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
    2 tomatoes about the size of baseballs, cored and diced large 2 tablespoons roughly chopped fresh oregano
    1 red onion, peeled and diced large 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
    5 peeled garlic cloves Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste

    directions

    Total:
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    • 1

      Combine all the ingredients in a large bowl and toss gently until evenly mixed.

    • 2

      Tear off 4 sheets of heavy-duty foil, each about 2 ft (60 cm) long, and stack them one on top of the other. Arrange the vegetables in the center of the top sheet.

    • 3

      Fold up the sheets around the ingredients, one after another, turning the package one-quarter turn between each sheet and making sure that each sheet is well sealed around the food. If necessary, divide the ingredients in half and make 2 hobo packs. Or, place the ingredients in a deep disposable foil pan and cover tightly with a double layer of heavy-duty foil.

    • 4

      Place the hobo pack (or packs) in the coals around the periphery of the fire, where the heat is less intense. Pile the coals up around the pack and cook until the eggplant is cooked through (20–30 minutes).

    • 5

      Remove the pack from the coals and unwrap the foil; if the vegetables need more time, put it back in the coals or in a 300°F (150°C) oven until it’s done.

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