Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Eggplant Casserole with Tomatoes, Mozzarella, and Basil

We got a beautiful eggplant in our CSA box. Hubby almost argued with me by saying it wasn’t an eggplant, but I was able to convince him otherwise. When I saw the eggplant, I first wanted to make a familiar dish: Spicy Baked Eggplant with Wasabi Mayonnaise and Basil. It’s delicious, and I haven’t made it in a long time, but  then I saw all the tomatoes in the CSA box (as well as the ones on our plants and my mother-in-law’s plants) and the mozzarella in the fridge, and I decided to get a bit creative.

Eggplant Casserole with Tomatoes, Mozzarella, and Basil

  • 1 eggplant, sliced
  • 1 tomato, sliced
  • 8 Mozzarella cheese slices, thinly sliced (I could have sliced my mozzarella quite a bit thinner, but I was in a cheesy mood, and it was delicious!)
  • Tomato sauce or marinara sauce, about 3/4 cup
  • Basil, chopped
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Olive oil (I used my Misto spray bottle)
  1. Sprinkle the eggplant slices with salt and put in a colander and let them drain. After 30 minutes, rinse the eggplant slices and pat them dry with a paper towel. Make sure you rinse the eggplant slices well so that your dish doesn’t end up too salty!
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  3. Spray a casserole dish with olive oil.
  4. Put one layer of eggplant slices into the casserole dish and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  5. Top the eggplant layer with tomato sauce, tomato slices, and mozzarella cheese slices.
  6. Add another eggplant layer.
  7. Repeat #5 (but I omitted the tomato slices this time)
  8. Bake at 350 degrees for 50 - 55 minutes, until the mozzarella cheese is slightly brown.
  9. Serve and top with chopped basil.

Prep and Cook Time: 1.5 hours (including the “watering” of the eggplant slices)
Servings: About 4

The dish was a bit “soupy” but very tasty. Well, almost anything with melted cheese is yummy, no? I didn’t mind the “soupy” part as I poured it into a cup and ate it like a soup. You could also discard it, but I really don’t know why you would do that! Hubby kept on raving about this dish. He is usually very good about complimenting my food, but the praise was unusual, even for him. Maybe the fact that I haven’t cooked anything in a while had something to do with all his praise…

Questions: Do you like eggplant? If so, what’s your favorite way to eat it? Have you seen any of the “unusual” eggplant varieties?
Be well,