This delicious plant-based, summer dish has a ton of Mediterranean flavors. And, while it doesn't have any meat - this vegetarian meal is filling for even the most hungry family member.
4 small Italian eggplants (about 10oz. each)
6 TBSP. Kosterina extra virgin olive oil
3 small onions, finely chopped
6 medium garlic cloves, finely minced
3 large ripe tomatoes, chopped
2 TBSP. tomato paste
1 TBSP. dried Greek oregano
½ cup chopped parsley
--- sea salt
--- freshly ground pepper
3 TBSP. plain breadcrumbs (optional)
--- Kosterina extra virgin olive oil for drizzling
Preheat oven at 375° F.
Trim the eggplants, and cut them in half lengthwise. Place the eggplants in a deep baking dish large enough to fit them all, (closely so the sides touch), with the cut side up. With a sharp knife, score the top a few times, drizzle with a bit of olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast for about 45 minutes.
In a medium pan, over medium heat, pour the oil and when hot and sauté the onion until soft. Add the garlic, and then the tomatoes, tomato paste, oregano, parsley and seasoning. Cook for a few minutes, add ½ cup warm water and simmer for about 15 minutes or until the sauce reduces a bit. Add more water if necessary so the mixture is still loose (but not watery) when ready.
Once the eggplants are ready, remove from the oven and top each one with the onion-tomato mixture. Sprinkle some breadcrumbs, and drizzle with more olive oil. Add a bit of warm water to the pan, return to the oven, and roast for about 30 minutes.
Remove from the oven. Let them cool a little and serve warm or at room temperature with some feta cheese on the side.
Note: If you can’t find ripe fresh tomatoes, you can use canned chopped tomatoes with their juices.
Marilena Leavitt is Kosterina’s Executive Chef and creates healthy and easy to prepare recipes for our readers. Check out her website at: http://www.marilenaskitchen.com
This classic, Italian dish is traditionally served as a first course (think: on a Tuscan hilltop). Enjoy it wherever you are, however you'd like to eat it - whether as a salad for lunch or an appetizer.