Showing posts with label Aubergine. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Aubergine. Show all posts

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Roasted and Stuffed Eggplant #BloggerCLUE

Roasted eggplant filled with a deliciously flavorful stuffing of ground beef, brown rice, olives, artichoke hearts, sunflower seeds and salty Parmesan, is topped with more cheese then baked to golden perfection. This is a great main course that is as attractive as it is tasty.

It’s Blogger C.L.U.E. Society time again and my secretly assigned blog is annaDishes! Anna lives in Florida so her blog is full of lovely fresh recipes with locally grown produce. Our challenge this month was to hunt for and make a recipe that our own grandmothers might have made. While my grandmothers never stuffed eggplant that I am aware off, they certainly did stuff and roast bell peppers – my mom still does so with regularity – and spicy eggplant casserole was a favorite dish whenever we were visiting. I am pretty sure both of my grandmothers would have loved this dish. Aside from the addition of some red pepper and an unavoidable cheese substitution, I’ve made it pretty much exactly as Anna wrote it in her original post, which you can see here. I’ve noted any changes in parentheses and added the metric measures for my readers who use them.

1 cup (dry) or 215g brown rice
2 cups or 480ml chicken broth
1 large eggplant (I used two – weighing 1 1/2 lbs or 665g together)
1 package baby bella mushrooms (One large portabella – weighing 3 1/5 oz or 100g)
1 small onion, chopped (Mine weighed 3 1/2 oz or 100g.)
1/4 cup or 60g kalamata olives, chopped (Mine had pits. Weight before pitting: 3 oz or 85g)
3/4 lb or 340g ground beef
3/4 cup or 110g sunflower seeds
1/2 cup or 100g artichoke hearts, chopped
2-3 cloves of garlic, chopped
3/4 cup, grated, or 70g Parmesan cheese (I grated from a fresh wedge of Parmesan so the weight measure is probably more accurate than the cup.)
Shredded Monterey Jack cheese (I used 3 1/2 oz or 100g Colby Jack.)
Shredded Gouda cheese
Olive oil
Salt and pepper
(I also added 2 teaspoons crushed red chilies and a few fresh thyme leaves for color when serving.)

First start the rice: Bring the rice and chicken stock to a boil with 1 tablespoon of olive oil. (I stir in the rice in the olive oil first to coat, then add in the stock.)

Reduce to low and cover. Cook rice over low heat for 55 minutes or until tender. (Mine took about 40 minutes, at which point I turned the fire off but left the cover on so the rice could steam gently until I was ready to use it. Then I fluffed it with a fork.)

Preheat oven to 350°F or 180°C.

Hollow out the eggplant making sure to leave 1/4 inch or a little more than 1/2cm on all sides. If the walls are too thin they won’t hold up with the stuffing.

Drizzle the baking dish with olive oil and place eggplant halves in center. Drizzle olive oil on eggplant.

 Roast in your preheated oven for 30-40 minutes, until cooked but not too soft.

Here they are roasted.

While the eggplant shells are cooking, chop 1/2 of the meat from the eggplant. (I used all of it.)

Eggplant, olives, artichoke hearts, onion, garlic and mushroom.
Combine the eggplant with onion, mushroom, olives, artichokes and sauté in pan until browned. (I also added a drizzle of olive oil to the pan.)
This is the "after" shot. The pan was almost full when I started but the vegetables cook down considerably. 

Remove from heat and set aside. In another pan, brown the ground beef until cooked through. (Once again, with a drizzle of olive oil for the pan.)

Combine all ingredients in one bowl. Add rice, sunflower seeds and Parmesan cheese.

(Taste your stuffing and add salt and pepper to taste. This is also where I added the crushed red chilies – since we like things spicy. Stir well!)

Transfer a large portion of the stuffing to each 1/2 of the eggplant. (I had stuffing leftover but that is a good thing. It’s delicious just on its own too.)

Cover with cheese and place in oven for 15 minutes.

Turn on broiler to brown the top.

Enjoy! I served each person a whole stuffed eggplant, sprinkled with a little fresh thyme, along with a green salad.

If you’d like to see more of annaDishes, you can follow her on Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest or like her blog page on Facebook.

CLUE logo

Many thanks to Liz from That Skinny Chick Can Bake, Kate from Kate's Kitchen and Christiane from Taking on Magazines for creating this fun challenge.

Here's a link list to all of the intrepid blog detectives in our group! Follow the links to see which blogs they were assigned and the recipes that their grandmothers might have made.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Stuffed Eggplant

I started school in the British system, with three years in Trinidad, and so I like to joke that I was bilingual before I learned my second language.  Sometimes the British words are indeed different from the American ones. When I am writing out a recipe, it is a challenge to make sure my various readers (many thanks to all five of you!) will understand the terminology and units.  (My goal is always to get you to try the recipe!) Like the units, the name I use for ingredients depends on where I first came across the recipe. Then I tend to revert to American for the method. Ride along with me!

2 large aubergines or eggplant (or eggplants?  What is the plural?)
6 ripe tomatoes, 4 chopped and 2 sliced
1 lb or 500g minced or ground lamb or beef (I used lamb.)
1 medium onion
2 cloves of garlic
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
Sea salt
Black pepper
Olive oil

There's the recipe on my iPad! 

Preheat your oven to 375°F or 190°C.

Cut your eggplant in half and scoop out the flesh, leaving a 1cm or 1/2 inch edge. 

I used a grapefruit spoon. Worked like a dream. But any spoon will do. 
Drizzle the shells with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.  

Place them on an oven tray and bake for 30 minutes.  (Jamie’s original recipe said, Cover with foil and bake, but somehow I missed that step and they turned out just fine.)

Meanwhile, dice the flesh, the onion and the garlic. Fry all three in the olive oil until soft.  Set aside.

Brown your meat and then stir in the herbs and cinnamon and chopped tomatoes.

Add in the eggplant mixture and cook for 10 minutes.

Fill the shells with the stuffing and top with the sliced tomatoes.  Bake for 30 minutes. 

I served this with a lovely salad of greens. 


Friday, June 24, 2011

Eggplant Something I can't pronounce (Papoutzakia)

Okay, it’s Eggplant Papoutzakia.

and that is the link to the recipe from Animal, Vegetable, Miracle written by Barbara Kingsolver, with her husband, Steven L. Hopp and, daughter, Camille Kingsolver.  I first read this wonderful book more than three years ago when I was living in Singapore.  Animal, Vegetable, Miracle is about one family’s experiment with growing their own food and living off the land for one year and only buying what they could not raise or grow from local farms in their New England area.  It is all about the advantages (personal health, earth health) of being a locavore, that is, someone who eats food found, grown or raised within 100 miles or fewer of his or her home.

If you have every lived in Singapore, you know that not much is grown on the actual island. (There is a goat farm that I could buy fresh milk from, but that is another cheesy post altogether.)  Much comes from nearby Malaysia, though perhaps not within 100 miles, so living by the Animal, Vegetable, Miracle standards was hard to achieve but it did make me more aware of produce and the distances it traveled to be on my plate and I tried to make more reasonable choices when I could.  

Fast forward three years and we are back in Malaysia. Local produce is much easier to come by, although I must confess to succumbing to the allure of the occasional golden-red-skinned nectarine or small punnet of raspberries, both of which certainly are not grown here. Once again, it’s about making better choices as much as possible.

So on to today’s recipe. Eggplant Papoutzakia.  My mom came across the recipe while flipping through my copy of the book (elder daughter was reading it and left it lying around) and, being a lover of eggplant, she asked if we could try it. My policy is that I am happy to cook anytime, anywhere for just about anyone, if they will come up with the menu.

2 lb. eggplant
Olive oil
2 medium onions, garlic to taste (I used four cloves.)
2 large tomatoes, diced
2 tsp. nutmeg
Salt and pepper to taste
6 oz. grated mozzarella (I used about eight ounces and sliced it into little pieces which I cast randomly and, I like to think, attractively about the top.)

Slice eggplant lengthwise and sauté lightly in olive oil. Remove from skillet and arrange in a baking dish. I cut my eggplant into many slices and browned them all in a non-stick skillet with just a bit of olive oil for each batch.  I stacked them on a big platter until all were browned and I was ready to assemble the dish. 

Chop onions and garlic and sauté in olive oil. Add diced tomato and spices and mix thoroughly. My family is not a lover of onion chunks so I let this cook down like a good spaghetti sauce, until there was no crunch left at all. I also added a teaspoon of sugar to counter the acid in the canned tomato.  I let it cool for a little bit, then pureed it in the blender. 

Spread mixture over the eggplants and sprinkle an even layer of cheese over top. I oiled the bottom of my lasagna dish with olive oil and spread a bit of the sauce around first. Then, I added the eggplant, the rest of the sauce and then the cheese in the aforementioned attractive manner.  

 Bake at 350 for 20 minutes, until golden on top.


If you are interested in finding locally grown foods in your area of the United States, check out this link. Buy mostly what is in season in your growing area and you are more likely to be buying local produce.