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Savory Eggplant Boats

Recently I was trying to make stuffed eggplant because it was a special occasion and I wanted to make something special to celebrate with our guests. The only problem is I was short on time, and I made the eggplant slices too thick. Company was coming in 30 minutes….what to do?

Eliminate steps, without sacrificing flavor.

With a few simple adjustments, dinner was on the table in 35 minutes. And it is now one of our favorite dishes. Here is how you can do it too:

Sautee onions on medium-high heat until translucent (2-3 minutes).

Add yellow, red, and/or red peppers (the smaller you cut the pieces, the faster it will cook).

Sautee peppers for 15 minutes, stirring frequently (If they get too dry, you can add a little water to keep them from sticking to the pan).

While the Peppers are cooking, grill the eggplant (5-8 min each side)

Thoroughly spray both sides with avocado oil.

 

Add spinach and cook until wilted (but still bright green – 2-3 minutes)

Put the grilled eggplant slices on a cookie sheet. (I use unbleached parchment paper for easy cleanup).

Top the eggplant with the pepper and spinach mixture.

Bake for 20 minutes at 425

While the eggplant is baking, bring balsamic vinegar to a boil and cook until reduced to ½ the amount you started with.

Then saute white onions until they are transparent (2-3 minutes).

Add capers and tomatoes. Simmer until the eggplant is done.

After 20 minutes of baking, top the eggplant with the balsamic tomato sauce.

Then serve!

Ingredients:

  • 2 red, yellow, or orange peppers cut into long, wide sections
  • 2 eggplants, cut into long, ½” sections – try to get eggplants that are straighter so you can get longer sections
  • 1 package of cherry/grape tomatoes quartered – or 3 large tomatoes cut into ½” chunks
  • 1 onion – chopped OR 5 chopped shallots
  • ½ bag spinach
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 2 tbsp capers
  • ½ cup balsamic vinegar
  • avocado oil spray (is great for high-heat cooking while keeping the flavor neutral)
  • paprika, salt

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 425
  2. Saute onions on medium-high heat until translucent. (2-3 minutes).
  3. Add garlic. Add yellow, red, and/or red peppers (the smaller you cut the pieces, the faster it will cook).
  4. Saute peppers for 15 minutes, stirring frequently. (If they get too dry, you can add a little water to keep them from sticking to the pan).
  5. Slice the eggplant. (Like apples, eggplants brown soon after you cut them. So you want to cut immediately before cooking. If you are cutting a lot at a time, then wrap sections in parchment paper to keep air exposure to a minimum until you are ready to cook).
  6. Lightly spray eggplant slices and your grill pan with avocado oil.
  7. While the peppers are cooking, grill eggplant slices for a few minutes on each side (until they are malleable, but still firm – 5-8 minutes per side).
  8. Add spinach to the pepper pan and sauté until spinach is wilted (but still bright green – 2-3 minutes). Set aside.
  9. When the eggplant is golden on each side and softened, put the grilled eggplant slices on at cookie sheet. (I use unbleached parchment paper for easy cleanup).
  10. Top the eggplant with the pepper and spinach mixture.
  11. Bake for 20 minutes at 425.
  12. While the eggplant is baking, bring balsamic vinegar to a boil and cook until reduced to ½ the amount you started with.
  13. Add capers.
  14. Then saute white onions until they are transparent (2-3 minutes).
  15. Add garlic. Cook for 1 minute.
  16. Add tomatoes. Cook at high heat for 3-5 minutes (until it becomes more liquidy). Simmer until the eggplant is done.
  17. After 20 minutes of baking, top the eggplant with the balsamic tomato sauce.
  18. When it’s done, sprinkle with paprika, and a pinch of salt.

* For an extra pop of flavor you can sauté tomatoes with a little vegetable broth and top this mixture onto the eggplant rolls just before serving.

Best served warm.

Enjoy!
Kirin