Sunday, June 10, 2012

NRW 23: Spicy Italian Stuffed Eggplant

New Recipe Week 23: Spicy Italian Stuffed Eggplant

Well, technically this isn't a new technique for me but since lately there have been quite a few posts from friends and on Pinterest on some kind of stuffed veggie, I decided to follow suite and stuff an eggplant I had lying around. I usually stuff Italian peppers but this change was very welcome indeed and is new to me so I thought it worked for my resolution challenge. Since I didn't actually follow a specific recipe, I'll give credit to Jennifer who gave me the craving after she posted a stuffed bell pepper on facebook.

I made this version with brown rice (cooked ahead of time) and just threw in what I had in the crisper; broccoli which I chopped into flowerets, skinny carrots I diced up and some yummy shallot. You could easily substitute any of the ingredients and just have fun with it. Sometimes I use diced red bell pepper or potatoes, the combos are endless and the results are always so yum! 

This one was exceptionally yum as the spice from the spicy Italian sausage really livened up the dish. Other than it being made with pork, though in my defense I did only use 4 oz which made 4 servings, this was a super healthy and very moist & filling meal. I was so happy to have leftovers, and I never eat leftovers:-), I'm definitely gonna keep this one in the books!

Spicy Italian Stuffed Eggplant
Serves 4

1 Lg Eggplant
4 oz. Spicy Italian Sausage
Olive Oil
1 Carrot (Diced)
1/2 C Broccoli Florets (Diced)
1/2 Shallot (Diced)
1/2 C Brown Rice (Cooked)
1/4 C Grated Cheese (I used Mozzarella)
Salt & Pepper to Taste
Salad Mix
Balsamic Vinegar

-Slice Eggplant in half lengthwise then cut or scoop out meat leaving about 1/2 inch  thickness, then coat with Olive Oil.
-Dice half of the eggplant meat and set aside.
-Heat about 1 tablespoon Olive Oil in a heavy skillet over medium high heat, then add Spicy Italian Sausage and cook for about 8 mins.
-Add in Shallots & Carrots and cook for about 5 mins, then add in Eggplant & Broccoli Florets and cook another 5 mins.
-Meanwhile combine Rice & Cheese in a large bowl, then Salt & Pepper to taste.
-Drain the meat-veggie mix then combine with rice until well mixed
-Stuff eggplant with mixture, place on baking sheet and tent with foil.
-Bake at 425 for 45 mins or until eggplant is tender.
-Sever over Salad Mix and sprinkle with Balsamic Vinegar.

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