Next up: Walnut-stuffed eggplants!
L & I made this recipe a few days ago… and swooned. It’s seriously that good.
Again, adapted from the Farmers’ Market Cookbook: Best of Summer (Vegetarian Times Special), but we had some fun with it. So, rations are slightly off – ahem – more eggplant filling than eggplant shells to fill…but who actually considers that a bad thing? We certainly didn’t as we stuffed our faces in anticipation for the real thing.
Without a doubt, the best dish we’ve EVER made together. This is what keeps our friendship alive.
Keep in mind, original recipe serves 6. We are, but of two hungry bellies.
- 3 medium eggplants – 3 lb. (why go medium when you can go large? 1 large beautiful eggplant, hefty lb.)
- 2 Tbs. plus 4 tsp. olive oil, divided
- 2 medium onions, diced – 3 cups (3/4 large white onion)
- 1 1/2 pt. grape tomatoes, halved – 3 cups (1 pt was enough for us)
- 1/4 cup roughly chopped walnut pieces
- 2 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon (none in our cupboards excuse)
- 1 1/2 tsp. dried oregano (none in our cupboards excuse)
- 1/4 cup whole-wheat breadcrumbs
- 2/3 cup crumbled reduced-fat feta cheese – 3 oz. (one thing i don’t do… reduced-fat cheese. ok, we tried one with feta & one with goat cheese. the goat won. hands down.)
- Lemon wedges, optional, for garnish (not optional. must include!)
1. Halve eggplants lengthwise, and scoop out flesh and seeds, leaving 1/2-inch-thick edges on eggplants’ shells. Cut scooped-out flesh into 1/2-inch pieces, and set in colander. Sprinkle eggplant pieces and inside of eggplant shells with salt. Let stand 25 to 30 minutes, or until beaded with moisture. (note: apparently it reduces potential bitterness, but may skip next time. time = money. worth it, but a bloody long time.) Rinse eggplant shells and pieces in cold water, and pat dry.
2. Bring large pot of salted water to a boil. Drop eggplant shells in water, and simmer 5 to 8 minutes, or until barely tender when pierced with fork. Drain in colander, cool, and pat dry.
3. Meanwhile, heat 1 Tbs. olive oil in large skillet over medium-high heat. Sauté onions 3 minutes, or until translucent. Add eggplant pieces, tomatoes, walnuts,
cinnamon, oregano, and 1/4 cup water. Season with salt and pepper, if desired (yes, do). Cook 8 minutes, or until vegetables are softened and browned, stirring occasionally.
4. Preheat oven to broil. Toss breadcrumbs with 4 tsp. olive oil in bowl. Brush each eggplant shell with 1/2 tsp. oil, and place cut-side up on baking sheet. Broil 5 minutes, or until tender and starting to brown. Reduce oven heat to 375°F.
5. Divide filling among eggplant shells. Sprinkle each stuffed eggplant with breadcrumb mixture, and top with feta cheese (or in our case, 1 with feta, 1 with goat cheese). Bake 35 minutes, or until heated through and browned on top. Serve with lemon wedges, if using.
6. While waiting, enjoy extra eggplant filling with a glass of vino.
J&S, if you guys try this wknd – can’t wait to hear how it turns out!
Read Full Post »