Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Overdosing on Eggplant (Part 1)

Let me tell you a secret...shhhhh....I love eggplant. Yes, it's true, I admit it, I'm head over heals for the aubergine as it is known or the official plant name Solanum Melongena. It is a cousin of the tomato and potato. I'm not sure how its related to the potato, tomato I get, but anyway, I'm no botanist.

So its a native food to India, and many times they use it as a replacement for meat. It's a great source of folic acid and potassium. I've just gone through the vitamin and mineral modules for my courses at school on my I-Touch and I am super charged about their importance. I always have been, but I understand more now than I did about what is good or important for what, and what is necessary. Sorry for the side note ;)

Back to eggplant, we really enjoy it in my house. I like it grilled, baked, fried, and sauteed. The next time I purchase it I want to make eggplant parmesan with it using almond meal for the breading. I haven't used almond meal as a breading yet, but I am looking forward to the experience. If it works as suggested by other gluten free cooks it will be a great option for my family.

So over the weekend I prepared what I call eggplant pizzas. I suppose its not accurate since there is not crust involved, and the eggplant is the base for everything. This time I used white and light purple eggplants. In the past I've prepared a tomato sauce for them, but I turned the tables this time and just used some sun dried tomatoes. Oh my goodness, it was success! You could add anything to them you really want that would fit on top. Meat eaters could add some chicken sausage on them. I bet you could makes these and place them on top of a bison or lamb burger and they would be a delicious addition.

Here is what I did for the eggplant pizzas:

2 Regular size eggplant or more if they are smaller
Sundried tomatoes that have soaked in olive oil (I've used ones that I have soaked myself and ones bought from the store already in the olive oil, if you go that route Trader Joes brand are good)
Coconut oil
Soft crumbled goat cheese (the log is fine too, just crumble it yourself)
Garlic powder
Sea Salt
Ground Pepper


Pre-heat your oven to 400 degrees F
Put coconut oil on a round or square flat piece of stoneware ( you can use a regular aluminum cookie tray, I just avoid cooking with aluminum when I can)
Slice the eggplant so you have medium, not too thick, round slices
Put a little coconut oil on the side of the eggplant that is up
Dust with garlic powder, a little sea salt, and ground pepper
Bake for 15 minutes
Take out and flip when the time goes off
Dust the other side of the eggplant with garlic powder, a little sea salt, and ground pepper
Place a few pieces of sun dried tomatoes on top
Be generous with the goat cheese
Bake for another 5-8 minutes
Enjoy! Serve with a raw kale salad or a side of chicken breast.

I hope that you enjoy these. Tell me if you make them, and how you like them. I literally ate these Saturday, Sunday, and on Monday.

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