Mediterranean Eggplant Dip (Baba Ganoush)

This dip can be made ahead and stored, covered, in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Ingredients:

1 cup canned garbanzo beans (chickpeas), drained

1 tablespoon fresh mint leaves (can substitute basil)

1 clove garlic

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1 cup grilled* or roasted eggplant

Olive oil and fresh mint (basil)

Walnuts, toasted

Grilled pita wedges or focaccia

 

In food processor finely chop chickpeas, mint, and garlic.  Add lemon juce, salt and eggplant.  With processor running, add olive oil in a steady stream; process until smooth.  Transfer to esrving dish; drizzle olive oil, sprinkle fresh mint, and walnuts.  Serve wth grilled pita.  Makes 1 3/4 cups, 14 2 Tbsp. servings.

 

*Grilled eggplant:  Brush eight 1/2 inch eggplant slices with 2 Tbsp. olive oil.  Sprinkle 1/2 tsp. kosher salt.  Grill uncovered directly over medium coals for 8 – 10 minutes or until tender, turning once.  Cool slightly; process in food processor until slightly chunky.

Eggplant Pomodoro Pasta

Diced eggplant turns tender and tasty sauteed with garlic and olive oil.  Toss with fresh plum tomatoes, green olives and capers and you have a simple light summer sauce.  We like it over angel hair pasta, but any type of pasta will work.  Serve with freshly grated Parmesan cheese and a mixed green salad.

6 Servings

Ingredients:

2 tablepoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 medium eggplant, (about1 pound), cut into 1/2-inch cubes

2 cloves garlic, minced

4 medium tomatoes, diced

1/3 cup chopped pitted green olives

2 tablespoons red-wine vinegar

4 teaspoons capers, rinsed

3/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper, (optional)

12 ounces whole-wheat angel hair pasta

1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley, or basil

 

1.  Put a pot of water on to boil

2.  Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat.  Add eggplant and cook, stirring occasionally, until just softened, about 5 minutes.  Add garlic and cook, stirring, until fragrant, 30 seconds to 1 minute.  Add tomatoes, olives, vinegar, capers, salt, pepper, and crushed red pepper (if using) and cook, stirring, until the tomatoes begin to break down, 5 – 7 minutes more.

3.  Meanwhile, cook pasta in boiling water until just tender, about 6 minutes or according to package directions.  Drain and divide the pasta among 6 shallow bowls.  Spoon the sauce over the pasta and sprinkle parsley (or basil) on top.

EatingWell July/August 2009

Healthy Eggplant Parmesan

Eggplant slices are dipped in egg and bread crumbs and then baked, instead of fried.  The slices are layered with spaghetti sauce, mozzarella and parmesan cheeses.

Ingredients:

3 eggplant, peeled and thinly sliced

2 eggs, beaten

4 cups Italian seasoned bread crumbs

6 cups spaghetti sauce, divided

1 (16 oz) package mozzarella cheese, shredded and divided

1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided

1/2 teaspoon dried basil

 

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees F

2.  Dip eggplant slices in egg, then in bread crumbs.  Place in a single layer on a baking sheet.  Bake in preheated oven for 5 minutes on each side.

3.  In a 9 x 13 inch baking dish spread spaghetti sauce to cover the bottom.  Place a layer of eggplant slices in the sauce.  Sprinkle with mozzarella and Parmesan cheeses.  Repeat with remaining ingredients, ending with the cheeses.  Sprinkle basil on top.

4.  Bake in preheated oven for 35 minutes, or until golden brown

Vegetable Chile

Well, with 30’s at night and cool 60’s during the day, Fall’s finally here.  .   . and time for comfort food.  Here’s a delicious Vegetable Chile which uses many of your Phocas Farms veggies.  This recipe is from Nourishing Traditions, The Cookbook that Challenges Politically Correct Nutrition and the Diet Dictocrats by Sally Fallon.  If you’re open to a healthier, “back to your roots”, way of living, this informative book full of recipes and wonderful information is a must.

Serves 8

Ingredients:

1 eggplant, peeled, cut into 1/2 inch cubes, salted and drained in a colander for 1 hour

(this removes the bitterness of the eggplant)

2 zucchini, diced, salted and drained in a colander for 1 hour

about 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

2 onions, chopped

1 red bell pepper, seeded and diced

1 yellow or green bell pepper, seeded and diced

1 cup chicken stock

1 can chopped tomatoes, or 4 fresh tomatoes, skins removed

1 small bunch basil leaves, cut up

2 tablespoons chile powder

3 cloves garlic, peeled and mashed

1 tablespoon ground cumin

1 tablespoon oregano

2 cups black beans, cooked

2 cups corn kernels, fresh or frozen

chopped green onions for garnish

grated Monterey Jack cheese for garnish

creme fraiche (or sour cream) for garnish

Rinse eggplant and pat dry.  Saute’ in batches in several tablespoons olive oil and transfer, using a slotted spoon, to a large casserole, adding more oil as necessary.  Rinse zucchini and pat dry.  Saute’ in batches in olive oil and transfer, using a slotted spoon, to casserole.  Saute peppers and onions in batches and transfer to casserole.  Add stock, tomatoes and seasonings to the pot, bring to a boil, skim and simmer for 1 hour.  Add beans and corn kernels and simmer another 1/2 hour.  Serve with garnishes.

Eggplant Cannelloni

Ingredients:

5 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 large globe eggplant (1 3/4 – 2 lbs)

For the Mushroom-Turkey Filling:

1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil

3/4 cup finely chopped yellow onion

6 oz. white mushrooms, brushed clean, stems removed, and caps finely chopped (about 1 1/2 cups)

1/2 lb. ground turkey breast

1 cup part-skim ricotta cheese

2 oz. prosciutto, trimmed of all visible fat and finely chopped

2 cups bread crumbs (about 4 pieces white bread) or can substitute panko bread crumbs

Freshly ground white or black peppers

3 cups Lean Béchamel Sauce (see below)

3/4 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

Position racks in the upper third and lower third of the oven and preheat to 375 degrees.  Brush 2 large baking sheets with 2 teaspoons of the olive oil.

Cut off the stem end of the eggplant.  Standing it upright on the cut end, and using a serrated knife or very sharp, thin-bladed knife, cut the eggplant vertically into slices 1/4 inch thick.  Discard the 2 outer slices, which are mostly skin.  You will have 12 slices.  Arrange 6 eggplant slices on each baking sheet and brush with 1 1/2 teaspoons of the oil.  Turn the slices and brush with the remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons oil.  Bake the eggplant until it starts to soften, about 10 minutes.  Turn the eggplant slices and return the baking sheets to the oven, putting them on opposite racks.  Bake until the eggplant slices are flexible at the neck end and still hold together at the wide end, 6 – 10 minutes longer.  Using a spatula, transfer the slices to a plate and set aside.  Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees.

To make the filling, in a nonstick frying pan over medium-high heat, warm the olive oil.  Add the onion and sauté until it starts to brown, about 5 minutes.  Mix in the mushrooms, cook until they release their liquid, and then continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until they are dry and start to brown, 6 – 7 minutes total.  Stir in the turkey, breaking it up with a wooden spoon.  When the meat loses its pink color, after 4 – 5 minutes, transfer the mixture to a bowl.  Mix in the ricotta and prosciutto, then stir in the bread crumbs and 1/8 teaspoon pepper just until the ingredients are evenly distributed; be careful not to over mix the filling, or it will become gluey.

Spread 1 cup of the béchamel sauce to cover the bottom of a shallow 1 qt. baking dish.  Lay an eggplant slice, with the wide end closest to you, on a work surface.  Place 1/4 cup of the filling at the wide end of the eggplant.  Lift the slice and roll away from you, pressing lightly so the filling spreads the whole width of the slice and enclosing the filling completely.  Place in the prepared baking dish.  Repeat with the remaining eggplant slices, forming 2 rows in the dish.  You may not need all the filling.  Pour the remaining béchamel sauce evenly over the eggplant.  Sprinkle on the Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese.  Cover the baking dish with aluminum fail.

Bake until the eggplant is soft and a knife inserted into the center of a roll is hot to the touch when removed, 1 – 1 1/4 hours.  Remove from the oven and let rest for 16 minutes.  Divide the cannelloni evenly among warmed plates and serve.

Lean Béchamel Sauce:

2 1/2 cups 1 percent fat milk

2 or 3 gratings fresh nutmeg

1 1/2 teaspoons canola oil

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

Kosher salt and freshly ground white or black pepper

In a saucepan over medium heat, warm the milk until it begins to steam, about 5 minutes.  Remove from the heat and add the nutmeg.  Keep hot.

In a heavy, nonstick saucepan over medium heat, warm the canola oil.  Using a wooden spoon, stir in the flour.  Then, using a mashing motion, stir constantly until the flour mixture begins to become fluffy and looks shiny, 3 – 4 minutes.  Cook for 30 seconds longer, taking care not to let the flour color.

While whisking vigorously, pour in 1/2 cup of the hot milk.  When the mixture is as smooth as you can get it, pour in the remaining milk while whisking constantly.  Cook over medium heat until the lumps have dissolved and the sauce comes to a boil.  Then, reducing the heat as needed to prevent scorching, cook, stirring often, until the sauce has the consistency of light whipping cream, about 5 minutes.  Add 1/2 teaspoon salt and season to taste with pepper.

Pour the sauce into a bowl, passing it through a fine-mesh sieve if lumps are visible.  Use immediately, or cover the hot sauce with a piece of plastic wrap, pressing it against the surface to prevent a skin from forming.  Set the sauce aside to cool, then refrigerate for up to 2 days before using.  Makes 3 cups.

Source: Essentials of Healthful Cooking, A Williams-Sonoma Cookbook