Monday, August 23, 2010

Rolled Eggplant

I've been finding rolled eggplant recipes since I started looking for eggplant recipes. I always thought it looked like too much work. However, after trying it, I've decided it's less work than a moussaka and even eggplant parmesan.
This is a great recipe. I used my homemade tomato sauce for the sauce which I think is partly what made it so good. In the pan, it reminded me of seafood (I am blanking on which one right now) with it's creamy centers and edge of purple. We enjoyed this and I will definitely make it again.

This serves 4.
Rolled Eggplant
adapted from Williams-Sonoma Cooking from the Farmer's Market

1 1/2 lb Italian or Asian eggplant (choose the skinny kind instead of the large, fat kind), trimmed and cut lengthwise into 1/4" slices
1/4 c plus 2 T olive oil
5 oz bulk Italian sausage (or links with casings removed)2 c your favorite tomato (pasta) sauce
1 c ricotta
4 oz fresh mozzarella cheese, cut into small pieces (or 4 oz grated mozzarella)
4 T parmesan cheese, grated
1 T parsley, chopped

Brush the eggplant with 1/4 c olive oil on both sides. Season with coarse salt. Place in a single layer on one or two baking sheets. Bake in preheated 450 degrees oven until lightly browned on bottom, about 10 minutes. Turn slices and bake another 5 - 7 minutes, until eggplant is tender but still holds together. Remove from oven and reduce oven temp to 350. (You can just turn the oven off as well).
While eggplant roasts, cook the sausage in a skillet over medium-high heat until cooked through. Stir in tomato sauce and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 5 minutes. Meanwhile, mix together the ricotta, mozzarella, 2 T Parmesan, and parsley. Season with salt and pepper.

Spread 1/2 of sauce on bottom of 9" baking dish (either round or square is fine). Place a spoonful of cheese mixture at the top of each eggplant and gently roll up. Place upright or laying down in the dish with sauce. Repeat until all eggplants are used. Spoon the remaining sauce between and on top of rolls. Sprinkle with remaining Parmesan. Bake in 350 degrees oven for 20 minutes, or until sauce is bubbly. Serve immediately.

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