I love eggplant, and am always looking for delicious new ways of preparing them. Here's an interesting recipe for stuffing the purple beauties! :)
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
- 1 large onion, finely chopped
- 1⁄4 cup chopped fresh parsley
- 1⁄2 stalk celery, chopped fine (or more, to taste)
- 1⁄2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1⁄4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, to taste
- 1 cup diced green bell pepper (or red or yellow or orange bell pepper or combination, if you prefer)
- 1⁄2 cup Italian breadcrumbs
- 4 tablespoons melted butter
- 2 medium eggplants
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- Heat the butter and olive oil together in large skillet.
- Add the onion, celery, and garlic and saute over low heat until the onion is translucent.
- Add the diced bell pepper and continue to saute until the onion is golden.
- In the meantime, stem the eggplants and cut them in half lengthwise.
- With a sharp knife, score each half several times lengthwise and across, carefully removing the pulp.
- Leave a sturdy shell of about 1/4" all around.
- Chop the eggplant pulp and add it to the skillet mixture along with all the remaining ingredients except the bread crumbs.
- Add a bit of water, just enough to keep the mixture moist.
- Simmer, covered, over low heat until the eggplant is tender, stirring occasionally.
- Stir in the bread crumbs.
- Set the eggplant shells in an oiled shallow baking dish, which should be of a size that they can be securely propped up against each other.
- Stuff the eggplant shells with the sauteed mixture, then drizzle them with 2 tablespoons of melted butter apiece.
- Bake at 375 degrees F for 30-40 minutes, or until the shells are tender but not collapsed.
- Serve with a bit of grated Parmesan for garnish.
- Note: if you do not like green bell pepper, you might want to try substituting with orange, yellow, or red bell pepper.