I went to the Farmer’s Market yesterday and I found some baby eggplants. So cute! I have never seen baby eggplants before so I decided I would buy some. My son was shopping with me (this is a rarity! He was really only there because he is a boy scout and had to sell wreaths at the market). Anyway, he suggested we stuff them. Wow, what a good idea, but with what??? Later I decided why not make it like eggplant parmesan, but stuffed. I think they came out pretty tasty on the inside, but I am not sure how to improve on the skin, it was sort-of chewy. I guess eating the skin can be optional.
Stuffed Baby Eggplant Parmesan
New twist on eggplant parmesan, but healthier and cuter. No frying involved, just a lot of super-healthy baked vegetables and it works well as either an appetizer or a side dish.
- 6 baby eggplants (or one to two large eggplants)
- 2 large Cremini mushrooms, finely diced
- About 1 cup of fresh spinach, finely chopped
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 cup of chunky tomato sauce (I had some of my Basic Tomato Sauce in the freezer)
- NOTE: Use a very chunky tomato sauce with onions and garlic, since the recipe is relying on these being in the sauce and I didn’t include adding extra onions and garlic into the vegetable mixture. If you don’t have them in the sauce then add a 1/4 cup of chopped onions and 1 minced garlic clove to the vegetable mixture.
- 1/2 cup of mozzarella cheese, shredded, divided
- 1/4 cup of fresh Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, shredded
- 1 tablespoon of fresh basil, chiffonade cut (thin strips)
- 1 tablespoon of fresh parsley, roughly chopped (optional garnish)
- Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Slice the eggplants in half lengthwise. Scoop out the inside flesh with a knife, leaving approximately 1/4 inch of flesh in the eggplant so it can serve as a cup for the vegetables. Chop the removed flesh into a small dice and put into a medium bowl.
- Roast the eggplant shells in the oven for 15 minutes, or until softened.
- Note: Some people say salt the eggplant for an hour before roasting to make it less bitter but I think that the baby eggplants are not bitter and I have also read that salting is a waste of time, eggplants have been bred to not have that bitterness, so I skip that.
- Add the chopped mushrooms and spinach to the bowl. Add some salt and pepper the the vegetables. Microwave the vegetables for one to two minutes, until softened.
- NOTE: You could also sauté them with some olive oil for a few minutes on the cooktop, I just wanted to save time and calories today.
- Add the tomato sauce and half of the mozzarella and parmesan. Mix thoroughly.
- Fill the eggplants with the vegetable mixture, top with remaining cheese and bake for 12 minutes or until cheese is slightly browned.
- Remove from oven and sprinkle with the basil and parsley. Enjoy!
December 4, 2016