Sunday, August 1, 2010

Dinner: Eggplant Bake

Trying new things to make for dinner, besides my favorite rice kick. Insert Eggplant here. I've always been kinda curious about eggplant having never tried it, let alone try to cook with it, I thought I'd give it a go. I'm not too picky about trying new things anyway. I kind of found a recipe on how to prepare eggplant and one recipe that used mushrooms, so I steered clear of that one! Yuck, mushrooms! So I kinda threw this together, with help on how to prepare eggplant by my Taste of Home cookbook from my wonderful Grams :)

I must say, after trying this, eggplant isn't too bad. I supposed I am not the best at making it and need practice. I'd love to find other recipes or ways to use eggplant, but it worked. 

I used:
1 medium eggplant, sliced in 1/4 in slices
about 1/2 cup dried bread crumbs, I used bread that I toasted to 'dry out'
1 tablespoon garlic salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
3 eggs
1/2 zucchini, diced
1/2 green bell pepper, diced
1/2 medium white onion, diced
1 can (28 oz) crushed/diced tomatoes
about 1/2 cup goat cheese and/or Parmesan cheese
little bit of EVOO

Slice the eggplant and put slices in a colander. Dust salt on slices and let sit for about 25-30 min. Rinse and pat dry. This is supposed to help take out some of the tartness of the eggplant, I should have let it sit a bit longer!
Next, pour some EVOO in a pan and heat. In a bowl, crack the eggs. In another bowl, combine bread crumbs, garlic salt, and black pepper. Dip the eggplant slices in the egg then dip into the bread crumb mixture. Put slices into the EVOO in the pan and cook for a few minutes on each side until brown. Next, place slices into a 13x9 inch greased pan. Once all the slices are cooked, add in the veggies into the EVOO mix and saute until tender, just about 5-8 minutes.
Once the veggies are done cooking add them to the eggplant in the pan. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Add in tomatoes over the eggplant-veggie mix. Top with cheese. Bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes. I would have gone longer to make the eggplant a bit more tender, but having a little bit to bit through wasn't bad either! Add more cheese to your liking. The goat cheese wasn't all that bad, for those of you that have never had it. It is similar to a blue cheese type of taste; a bit sour-has a bite, but the plus side is it is dairy free! Not a bad combination with the Parmesan together actually. Try something new!

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