Thursday, October 1, 2009

Eggplant Again

The late sumer eggplant harvest in our front yard is booming. We grow a small lavender tinged white variety with a fairly thick skin but sweet, never bitter meat.
Martha Stewart gave me this idea for this simple dish-- I took a little bit of a run with it. I baked (450º) the whole eggplants (these are individual serving size eggplants) just until soft (about 15 minutes), took a thin slice off the top and hollowed each eggplant out -- reserving the flesh and leaving about 1/4" of shell wall all around.
I chopped the reserved eggplant and added it to a sauté pan with olive oil, garlic, some italian sausage and a few chopped tomatoes. I allowed that mixture to slowly simmer until the eggplant was tender and then added in a splash of marinara sauce and some chopped parsley and let it all simmer for another 5 minutes or so. I filled the eggplant shells (in a baking dish) with the cooked mixture and baked for 10 minutes. While the eggplant baked I whipped up a quick bechamel (or besciamella as the Italians say) sauce -- butter, flour, milk, S&P, and a pinch of nutmeg. I poured a couple tablespoons of the rich sauce over each eggplant, sprinkled with Parmesan cheese and baked another 20 minutes until golden brown.
Stuffed Eggplant Parmesan.

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