Miso-Glazed Peaches and Eggplant
with Rice Noodles and Minted Spinach
- 3 ounces Thai eggplant
- 1 scallion
- 1 fresh red chile
- Fresh basil
- Fresh mint
- 3 ounces baby spinach
- 3 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon rice vinegar
- 1 tablespoon miso paste
- 1 teaspoon sambal oelek (Indonesian chile paste)
- 1/2 teaspoon agave syrup
- 3 tablespoons vegetable oil*
- 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
- 4 ounces rice noodles
- 1/2 teaspoon black sesame seeds
- *not included
- Parchment paper
Heat the oven to 400°F. Rinse and dry the eggplant, scallions, chile, herbs, peach, and spinach. Bring a large pot of water to a boil and salt it. Mince the garlic. Reserve 1 teaspoon of rice vinegar for step 5 and put the remaining 3 tablespoons into a small bowl with the garlic, miso, sambal, agave, and a pinch of salt and whisk to combine. Slowly whisk in 2 tablespoons vegetable oil and the sesame oil; set aside.
Line a rimmed baking sheet with the parchment. Trim and dice the eggplant; spread it out a single layer on the pan. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, drizzle with 1 tablespoon vegetable oil, and toss to coat. Roast until the eggplant begins to brown, 6 to 8 minutes. Meanwhile, trim and chop the scallion; put it in a large bowl. Trim, seed, and dice the chile; add some or all of it to the bowl, depending on your affinity for heat. Strip the basil and mint leaves from the stems. Stack and roll the basil leaves, and then cut them into thin ribbons; repeat with the mint. Add the basil and half the mint to the bowl. When the eggplant is done, add it to the bowl.
Halve the peach along the seam and twist the halves to expose the pit; remove and discard the pit. Dice the flesh, add it to the small bowl with the dressing, and toss to coat. Add the noodles to the boiling water and stir occasionally. Start tasting them after 3 minutes; they should be tender not mushy. Drain the noodles into a colander and run under cold water.
Add the noodles, peaches, and dressing to the large bowl with the eggplant and gently toss to coat. Taste and adjust the seasoning. Sprinkle with sesame seeds.
Thinly slice the spinach and put it in a serving bowl. Add the remaining mint, drizzle with the remaining 1 teaspoon vinegar, and sprinkle with salt and pepper; toss and taste and adjust the seasoning. Serve the noodles in bowls with the spinach salad on the side.