2 large and long eggplants
1/4 cup olive oil, plus 2 tbsp lemon evoo
1 1/2 tsp thyme leaves, plus additional sprigs for garnish
1 tsp za'atar
9 tbsp buttermilk
1/2 cup Greek yogurt
1 1/2 tbsp evoo
1 small garlic clove, pasted with a pinch of salt
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Cut the eggplants in half lengthwise, cutting through the stalk. Use a small sharp knife to make three or four parallel incisions in the cut side of each eggplant half (without cutting through the skin) and then repeating in the opposite direction to create a diamond-shaped pattern.
Place the eggplant halves, cut side up, on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Brush with olive oil until the oil is absorbed by the flesh. Sprinkle with thyme leaves and season with s&p. Roast for 35-40 minutes, until the flesh is soft and nicely browned. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely.
While the eggplants are roasting, whisk together all of the ingredients for the sauce. Taste for seasoning. Keep cold until needed
To serve, spoon plenty of buttermilk sauce over the eggplant halves without covering the stalks. Sprinkle with za'atar and plenty of pomegranate seeds. Garnish with additional thyme leaves. Finish off with a drizzle of lemon evoo