Sunday, August 10, 2008

Eggplant Even That Girl Can Love

I've had eggplant rolls on our weekly menu for about three weeks now but didn't get around to making it until this past Thursday because, as I mentioned in the previous post, I haven't fully embraced eggplant. However, this recipe (gleaned from several to make my own) made me, in not an eggplant lover, an eggplant convert. Here's my recipe:

Grilled Eggplant Rolls

1 large eggplant (about 1 - 1/2 lbs.)
Kosher salt
8 oz ricotta
1/2 cup finely grated parmesan
1/4 cup shredded basil
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper (more if desired)
tomato-based pasta sauce -- whatever kind you prefer

Peel a two-inch strip from opposite sides of the eggplant, then make 1/4 inch (or less) slices. (I actually used the tines of a fork to make the marks where I cut and came out with 8 slices.) Sprinkle both sides of each slice with kosher salt and lay in a colander for 30 minutes.

In a small bowl mix ricotta, parmesan, basil, cayenne, salt and pepper. Set aside.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Heat grill on high. Rinse eggplant slices and pat dry. Brush olive oil on both sides of eggplant. Grill until slightly softened, turning once, about 5 minutes total.

Place a heaping tablespoon of cheese mixture on the small end of the eggplant and roll up. Place eggplant in an 8"x8" baking pan. Spoon enough sauce to cover eggplant, making sure edges are covered. Cover pan with foil and place in oven for about 20 minutes or until bubbling.

Serves 3 - 4.

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