Today is one of my favorite days of the year.
That being said, it seems awfully appropriate to start my food blog on Thanksgiving. After all, this holiday is the culmination of everything I am as a foodie. I love family, I love cooking, and I certainly love eating. There are no words to describe how thrilled I am that there’s a day of the year devoted to the celebration of these three things.
And then there’s the turkey.
In honor of Thanksgiving, I’ll be sharing a recipe that uses turkey. It’s easy, delicious, and it looks seriously gourmet. I call it “Stuffed Eggplant (But Not Really)” because it is, to be frank, not really stuffed. Luckily, it looks and tastes like the real thing, and is ready in about a half hour.
Now, in the spirit of a phenomenal holiday, eat and be merry.
Stuffed Eggplant (But Not Really)
1 large eggplant
¼ cup olive oil, plus 1 tbsp
1 small white onion
3 cloves garlic
½ lb ground meat (turkey, beef or lamb)
¼ cup white wine or chicken stock
1 tsp oregano
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 tbsp butter
1/3 cup breadcrumbs
½ cup shredded mozzarella
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
Cut off the top of the eggplant and set aside. Slice the remaining eggplant into 5 inch-thick “steaks.” Place four out of five of the slices—all but the middle one—on a baking sheet and coat in ¼ cup of the olive oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Bake for 20 minutes. As it roasts, cube the remaining eggplant.
Dice the onion and place in a pan with the remaining 1 tbsp olive oil. Allow it to simmer on low-medium heat for about 5 minutes, or until somewhat transparent. Finely chop the garlic and add it to the onions, stirring for a minute or two.
Next, add the ground meat. Use a fork to break it up as it cooks. As the meat begins to brown, add the white wine or chicken stock. Mix in the oregano, as well as the salt and pepper.
In a separate pan, melt the butter on high heat. Mix in the breadcrumbs, and continue to stir until golden. Take off the heat and place it in a bowl. Add half of the breadcrumbs to the ground meat mixture, as well as the shredded mozzarella.
Take the eggplant out of the oven and put it on a plate. Spoon a generous portion of the ground meat mixture on top of the eggplant. Top this with a teaspoon of the remaining breadcrumbs, and garnish with a pinch of shredded mozzarella.