I am always looking for tasty and nutritious ways to serve vegetables in my household. I was fortunate enough to have a very good Italian friend who taught me how to make eggplant that even my picky kids would eat. I lived in California and grew my own eggplant in my garden at the time I learned this delicious recipe.
Two or three medium eggplants.
Olive oil. (Cooking spray can be substituted)
One cup chopped onion.
One cup sliced mushrooms.
One cup chopped green, red or yellow peppers.
One box of wild rice mix.
One tablespoon of Italian Seasoning.
Two 8-ounce cans tomato sauce.
One cup grated mozzarella cheese.
One half cup parmesan cheese, grated. (Fresh is best.)
1. Wash eggplants and cut in half, lengthwise. Remove pulp and scrape until eggplants are approximately 1/4 inch thick. (Pulp can be saved for other recipes.)
2. Using a non-stick skillet, saute onions, mushrooms and peppers in olive oil, until tender.
3. Prepare the wild rice mix as directed. Once finished, add to the sauteed vegetables and mix well. Add Italian seasoning and one 8-ounce can of tomato sauce to this mixture. Mix well.
4. Arrange eggplant shells in baking dish. Cooking spray will prevent sticking and will make clean-up easier.
5. Divide and spoon the vegetable/rice mixture into the eggplant shells. Pour one 8-ounce can of tomato sauce over stuffed eggplants.
6. Sprinkle mozzarella cheese over each eggplant.
7. Bake, uncovered, in oven at 350 for 15 minutes. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese and bake five minutes more.
I serve this as a side dish to spaghetti or with any Italian main dish. It can be served as a main dish for a meatless meal. Warm French bread and a crisp green salad complete the meal.
Another variation to this stuffed eggplant is to add browned Italian sausage to the vegetable/rice mixture before stuffing. This version can suffice for a main dish and I make fettuccini to serve with it. Toasted garlic bread and salad make a very satisfying meal that my whole family enjoys.
Of course, you can adjust the ingredients to make larger or smaller amounts. These also freeze well for a quick meal any time.
I live in Colorado now. I don't get home grown eggplants anymore but store bought ones work just as well. I make sure to pick firm, glossy purple eggplants.
This isn't a recipe I make often because it involves some work. But every once in a while I mention it and my family all say, "YEAH!".