an equal opportunity eater.
Taking the neurosis out of food, one meal at a time.
Wednesday, December 2, 2009
I love watchingGiada de Laurentiis as she cooks or travels. All right, all right, maybe she is a bit too perfect. But she traveled to Los Olivos and sampled some marvelous looking stuff: involtini di melanzane, or eggplant rolls, eggplant wrapped around mozzarella, slathered in a mouth watering tomato sauce at Trattoria Grappola, and I just had to have some. So the next time we were wine tasting at my favorite spot, we dropped by the restaurant and ordered it for dinner.
Giada was right, it was heaven.
Lately I've had such a craving! So I've tinkered and modified, and think I've come up with a winner. Particularly because I'm not frying the eggplant, I'm baking it.
Slice the eggplant lengthwise, 1/2 inch slices or so. Place on your tinfoil lined cookie sheet-brush each side with olive oil. Bake 13 minutes at 350 degrees, flip the eggplant, bake another 10 minutes or so until you feel they're cooked through. Remove and cool.
While the eggplant is baking, make your nifty tomato sauce:
Coat the bottom of a saute pan with a thin slick of olive oil. Mince a clove or two of garlic, toss in. Turn heat to medium. Dice and salt three or four tomatoes--or use two cups canned tomatoes. Add to sauce pan. When the tomatoes start to cook down, lower heat and simmer till done. Add some basil leaves for the heck of it. (Oh, color and flavor, too). Ladle half a cup or so to cover the bottom of a small baking dish.
Slice a log of mozzarella, an ounce or so per eggplant. Lay the mozzarella on the center of the eggplant slice, fold over the edged of the eggplant. Place seam side down in the baking dish. Do the same for the rest of your slices. Ladle the rest of the sauce over the eggplant, grate a tablespoon of parmesan cheese on top. Bake in 350 degree oven until heated, and the cheese is happily melting.
Just writing this down makes me want to rush out to Super King and pick up a couple of more eggplants--where are my car keys?