We are part of a local CSA (from Delvin Farms!) and get so many fresh veggies each week, a lot of which weren’t normal parts of our diet prior to joining. One of those is the lovely eggplant. I’m always on the lookout for yummy eggplant dishes, and found this one via the lovely Barefoot Contessa.
What you need:
1.5 lbs eggplant, unpeeled, sliced about half an inch thick
half cup ricotta cheese
3 large eggs
half cup half-and-half
1 cup freshly grated parmesan (thought i just used the non-freshly grated kind for this recipe, and it still tasted great!)
1 cup marinara
salt & pepper
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
Heat about 1/8 inch of oilive oil in a very large frying pan over medium heat. When oil is almost smoking, add several slices of eggplant and cook, turning once, until they are evenly browned on both sides and cooked through, anywhere from 5-7 min. Do this will all the eggplant slices. You will need to add in more olive oil as you go, because the eggplant soaks it up – transfer it to a plate with paper towels to drain to help with the greasiness.
While you are cooking the eggplant, mix together the ricotta, eggs, half-and-half, half cup of the parmesan, 1/4 teaspoon of salt and pepper in a small bowl.
Now, you can either bake these individually in gratin dishes, or you can cook the whole thing in a casserole dish. In each of your four gratin dishes, place a layer of eggplant, sprinkle with parmesan, salt and pepper and spoon on 1/4 cup of the marinara sauce. Next, add a second layer of eggplant, then 1/4 of the ricotta mixture and last, sprinkle parmesan on top.
Place the gratins on a baking dish and bake for 10 minutes, then lower the heat to 375 degrees and bake for another 20 minutes or until the custard sets and the top is browned.
I served ours with a green salad and some crusty bread and it was perfection! Let me know if you try the recipe and how you like it!