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Stuffed Eggplant Casserole
John Morrison formerly of Prego, Westin Resort Guam


Eggplant Preparation:
2 lbs eggplant, cut lengthwise
salt


Stuffing:
1 cup breadcrumbs
1 1/2 cups mixed mozzarella and parmesan
2 Tbs garlic, minced
4 oz smoked ham, diced
1 egg
1 medium zucchini
salt and pepper
1 Tbs chopped basil


Sauce:
1 can (28 oz) crushed tomatoes
1/2 medium yellow onion, diced
1 Tbs garlic, minced
1 Tbs olive oil
1 to 2 Tbs tomato paste
salt and Pepper


4 to 6 oz provolone cheese, sliced

Eggplant: coat eggplant with salt lightly and let sit for 30 minutes. Wash and drain off salty and astringent juices. Allow the eggplant to dry slightly and then coat with olive oil and bake until slightly golden and soft. Allow to cool down.

Sauce: Sweat onion in olive oil. Add garlic at end of sweat. Add tomato to sweat and paste, salt and pepper. Allow sauce to slowly reduce until slightly thick and the taste of the paste has cooked out. Add a small amount of sauce to the bottom of a casserole dish.

Stuffing: Mix all ingredients in a bowl. Make small balls just big enough to roll up in each slice of eggplant and then place in casserole. Once casserole is full layer the rest of the sauce on top and then add provolone cheese on top of that. Bake at least 20 minutes at 300F to 350F or until sides are bubbling with juices and the top is golden brown.

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: This main course is perfect for entertaining. Put it in the oven and forget about it while you make an appetizer for your guests.

Yield: 6 Servings

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