Baked Stuffed Eggplant

These stuffed eggplants are filled with peppers, onion, garlic, and tomatoes all fresh and available from our farm stand vendors.  Serve along with olives, hummus, and warm pita from OLIVES 4 YOU and you are in for a Farmers Market feast. Ingredients:

  • 2  (6-8 inches long, 10-12 ounces each) small-to-medium Italian eggplants
  • 3 tablespoon(s) extra-virgin olive oil or grapeseed oil
  • 2 teaspoon(s) extra-virgin olive oil or grapesseed oil
  • 1 teaspoon(s) salt, divided
  • 1 large onion
  • 2 clove(s) garlic
  • 1 large green bell pepper, cut lengthwise into quarters
  • 3  plum tomatoes
  • 1/2  chopped flat-leaf parsley, divided
  • 1 teaspoon(s) sugar
  • 2  bay leaves
  • Lemon wedges, for serving

Directions

1 .Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Coat a large roasting pan with cooking spray.

2. Remove leaves from eggplants, but leave the stems on. Cut the eggplants in half lengthwise, through the stem. Using a small sharp knife, make a deep slit lengthwise down the flesh side of each eggplant half: start about 1 inch below the stem and stop about 1 inch from the bottom. Do not cut completely through the skin.

3. Brush the eggplant all over with 2 tablespoons oil. Sprinkle the eggplant flesh with 1/4 teaspoon salt. Place cut-side down in the prepared roasting pan. Bake for 15 minutes.

4. Meanwhile, quarter and thinly slice onion. Finely chop garlic. Thinly slice 1 bell pepper quarter and set aside; dice the remaining pepper. Cut 1 tomato into 4 wedges and set aside; dice the remaining 2 tomatoes.

5. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic; cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the diced bell pepper, the diced tomatoes, 1/2 cup parsley, sugar, bay leaves, and the remaining 3/4 teaspoon salt. Cook, stirring, for 3 minutes. Remove from heat; discard bay leaves.

6. After the eggplant has baked for 15 minutes, remove from the oven. Carefully turn each eggplant half over and use 2 spoons to open and widen the slits. Stuff the slits with the vegetable mixture, pressing it down gently. Place a wedge of tomato in the middle of each half; evenly divide the reserved sliced pepper among the halves.

7 .Add 1/4 inch hot water to the roasting pan.  Drizzle the eggplant with the remaining 2 teaspoons oil. Bake 30 minutes more.

8. Let cool for at least 15 minutes. Serve warm or cool completely, refrigerate, and serve cold. Garnish with the remaining 3 tablespoons parsley and lemon wedges.

Recipe Courtesy of EatingWell.com