Friday, January 20, 2012

RECIPES: Mediterranean Stuffed Eggplant

It has literally been at least a decade since I've had eggplant. As a child growing up in the South I remember my mom cutting it into slices, soaking it in milk, then rolling it in some sort of floury mixture before frying it in vegetable oil **STOP** What were we thinking back then??? My body cringes at the thought! As is visible in the photo of the vegetables I bought for the week, there's an eggplant among them. It has plagued me all week as to what to do with it. Upon my 'exploring' on the Internet I came across this recipe for's Mediterranean Stuffed Eggplant, so I figured I'd give it a try.

I am very glad I did! It's an amazing recipe and one I will definitely use again and again. As a matter of fact, I bought extra mushrooms in hopes of having some stuffing left over, so guess what's for dinner tomorrow night? You guessed it! Stuffed mushrooms!


    • 1 lb meatloaf mixture ( ground pork, veal, beef)
    • 1 tablespoon lard
    • 1 small onions, chopped
    • 1 tablespoon organic butter
    • 1/2 pint white mushrooms, chopped
    • 2 small eggplants, halved and contents scooped out and chopped
    • 1/4 cup raisins, chopped
    • 1/4 cup almond meal ( or finely chopped almonds)
    • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
    • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
    • 1 teaspoon onion powder
    • 1 pinch cayenne powder
    • 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
    • 1/2 cup water
    • 1 tablespoon olive oil
    • 3/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
    • 2 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese**Please note** The photo shows a jar with some bacon fat. I was going to use it instead of olive oil and butter but changed my mind. 


      1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
      2. In a cast iron skillet over medium high heat, cook ground meat in lard until well browned, scraping bottom with a wooden spoon periodically to avoid burning.
      3. In a large saucepan over medium heat, saute onions in butter, with a little salt, until translucent (about five minutes). Add chopped mushrooms. Cook until mushrooms have softened.
      4. Add onion and mushroom mixture to meat in skillet, and stir to combine. Add chopped eggplant to skillet, stir to combine. Add seasonings, raisins and almonds. When eggplant softens, add water to skillet, and deglaze bottom of the pan.
        1. Add olive oil to the empty saucepan. Lightly salt eggplant cavities, and place eggplant in the saucepan, cut side down. Cook eggplant this way for about 3-5 minutes. Flip eggplant, exposing cavities. Cook eggplant in a 400 degree oven for another 5 minutes. Remove eggplant from the oven.
        2. Add cheeses to the meat mixture and stir to combine. Check for seasonings, and add salt if necessary. Divide meat mixture evenly, and stuff into the 4 eggplant halves.
          7. Bake until delicious, golden brown, and bubbly, about 5 more minutes.
          8. Serve.

          ***NOTE*** This is by far the best way I have ever eaten eggplant. It's amazing! (Even Conrad raved about it!!)

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