On a mild, sunny day at the SOAR Farmers Market, Chef Baasim Zafar and his team set up their “kitchen” at the the SOAR Info Booth to make a dish that can be found nowhere else – Vegan Eggplant Burger with Avocado. Not even currently available on the Torali menu, this vegan dish began with Chef Zafar creating an avocado spread. He leaves the pit in his spread to help keep the avocado from browning. Chef Zafar then cut and salted fresh eggplant, found at our market, while explaining the difference between types and colors of eggplants.

“I’m using an Italian Eggplant,” Zafar noted, explaining that this thicker, nutrient-rich variety made for the best burger.

While allowing the sliced eggplant to dry before frying, Chef Zafar sautéed peppers and onions in a mix of sweet and sour flavors. As Chef Zafar began frying the slices, his team assembled dozens of replicas of Zafar’s burger behind him as market shoppers looked on in excitement. Once the eggplant was fried, Chef Zafar placed it on a toasted multigrain bun and topped it with arugula, a tomato slice, and his freshly made sweet and sour peppers and avocado spread. Delicious!

We thank Chef Baasim Zafar and Torali at the Ritz-Carlton Chicago for showing us what’s cooking in their kitchen with such a unique, flavorful dish!

Want to try the Vegan Eggplant Burger with Avocado for yourself?