Thursday, May 28, 2015

Paula's Involtini (Eggplant Rolls)

I know it is summertime.  Normally, most people think about cooking lighter  during the summer.  I guess I am not normal.  I like to cook what my taste buds and senses are hungry for.  
When I saw this recipe I knew I had to try it.  It has several things that I like:  eggplant, prosciutto, fresh mozzarella cheese and basil.  
Paula Lambert is the author of this recipe.  Paula founded the Dallas Mozzarella Company in 1982.
As usual I will make a few comments at the end of the recipe.

Paula’s Involtini (Eggplant Rolls)
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil and more if needed
2 large eggplant, cut lengthwise into 16 slices
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
1 pint fresh cherry tomatoes
1/2 yellow onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
½ teaspoon chopped capers
16 slices prosciutto
1 lb fresh mozzarella
8 leaves fresh basil
8 stems fresh Italian parsley
Serves 8

Preheat the oven to 350 F degrees
Brush one side of each piece of eggplant with olive oil as it is placed oiled-side down on a grill pan or charcoal grill.  Alternatively place under a hot broiler with oiled side toward the heat. When browned brush uncooked side with olive oil and turn to cook on the other side.
 While the eggplant is grilling, make a simple tomato sauce by placing a medium sauce pan over medium heat. Add the olive oil and sauté the onion for 2 to 3 and then add the garlic and sauté for another minute or so. Finally stir in the tomatoes and cook the mixture briefly, for about about 5 minutes. Remove the sauce from the heat and add the capers.
Lightly brush a baking 9×13” dish with olive oil. Place the grilled eggplant slices on a large cutting board. On each eggplant piece, place a slice of prosciutto and a slice of mozzarella. Distribute all the prosciutto and mozzarella on the eggplant slices. Roll the eggplant from the small end forward, and place in the baking dish. Arrange the involtini with the seam side down in  baking dish.  Spread the tomato sauce over the involtini. Place in the oven and bake for 20 to 30 minutes.
Cut the basil and parsley thinly in a chiffonade.  Remove eggplant from oven, top w/parsley and basil.
Notes:  Since I had some tomato sauce left over from Creole Daube, I did not make the sauce as listed.  The sauce listed should be fairly light.
It may look like there are a lot of ingredients but, it is a real straightforward recipe.  Perhaps the hardest thing is cutting even slices from the eggplant.
I cut the recipe in half and it worked great.
2 rolls per person with salad is a meal.
Omit the prosciutto for a vegetarian, gluten free entree.
I hope you enjoy
Until next time:
Bon Appetit Y'all
Chef Leslie Bartosh

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