Thursday, October 7, 2010

Rolled Eggplant

Sometimes a recipe calls for a particular pan. Sometimes I ignore the recipe and use whatever pan is closest or prettiest. That is not always a good idea, because you'll get to the point in the recipe where you're supposed to be done, and your pan will be more than half empty. The pretty pan, you see, is quite a bit larger than the 9-inch pan called for in the recipe, and the eggplant rolls look sad and lost.

But the pretty pan is pretty. And the 9-inch pan is not as pretty.

This was so good. I'm pretty sure I could eat this once a week, and would, if it wouldn't likely have an adverse effect on my ability to fit in my pants.

Rolled Eggplant with Sausage and Mozzarella, adapted slightly from Cooking from the Farmers' Market
Serves 4
2 Asian eggplant, cut lengthwise into 1/4 inch slices
1/4 c plus 2 T olive oil
salt and pepper
5 oz Italian sausage, casings removed
2 c crushed tomato
1 t oregano
1/2 t salt
1 t pepper
1 c ricotta
4 T mozzarella, cut into small pieces
2 T Parmesan
1 T parsley, chopped

Preheat the oven to 450F. Brush the eggplant on both sides with the 1/4 c olive oil, then salt. Bake until lightly browned on the bottom, 10 minutes, then turn each piece and bake 7 minutes more. Remove from the oven and set aside. Reduce the oven temperature to 350F.

In a medium skillet over medium heat, cook the sausage until browned, 5 minutes. Stir in the crushed tomatoes, oregano, salt and pepper. Simmer 10 minutes.
In a bowl, mix the ricotta, mozzarella, half the Parmesan, and parsley. Season with salt and pepper.

Spread half the tomato sauce on the bottom of a 9-inch pan. Place a spoonful of the cheese mixture near the wide end of each eggplant slice, roll up, and place upright in the sauce. Spoon the remaining sauce between the rolls. Sprinkle with the remaining Parmesan.

Bake until bubbling, 30 minutes. Serve immediately.

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