My husband is not a fan of eggplant. He even went so far as to tell his dad that he was not looking forward to this meal. He can tolerate eggplant, but does not really like it. I, however, really like eggplant; and I have decided (since I do the cooking and grocery shopping) that eggplant is one of those foods that he can learn to appreciate, if not love. We are already a blue cheese, cucumber, brie, and coconut deprived household because of my husband's dislikes; I was not about to add eggplant to that list. (Conversely, I hate ham...so he has to put up with my not bringing ham into our house; with the exception of prosciutto.) After much hemming and hawing, he ended up LOVING this recipe...eggplant and all! In fact, he said that it was his favorite eggplant dish! That is progress, my friends!!! To his credit, these melts were pretty delicious. A side dish of sauteed Swiss chard complimented our open-faced sandwiches quite nicely.
Eggplant and Mozzarella Melts
From: Martha Stewart's Everyday Food: Fresh Flavor Fast: 250 Easy, Delicious Recipes For Any Time of Day
2 large eggs
Coarse salt and ground pepper
3/4 cup plain dried breadcrumbs
Olive oil, for baking sheet
1 medium eggplant (about 1 pound), sliced into 1/2-inch-thick rounds
1 loaf (8 ounces) soft Italian bread
2 cups store-bought tomato sauce
8 ounces part-skim mozzarella cheese, thinly sliced
1.Preheat oven to 475 degrees. (Peel the eggplant before slicing, if desired.) In a shallow bowl, lightly beat eggs with 1 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Spread breadcrumbs in a pie plate or shallow bowl.
2.Oil a rimmed baking sheet. Dip eggplant rounds in egg, then dredge in breadcrumbs, turning to coat completely; transfer to prepared baking sheet. Bake (without turning) until golden and tender, 15 to 20 minutes.
3.Meanwhile, split bread lengthwise, and place cut side up on another baking sheet; press gently in centers to create a well. Layer both halves with tomato sauce, eggplant, and cheese. Bake until cheese is browned in spots, 6 to 8 minutes. (Turn on the broiler for a couple of minutes to make the cheese toast, if needed.)
Sauteed Swiss Chard with Parmesan Cheese
From: allrecipes.com; By: DannyBoy
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1/2 small red onion, diced
1 bunch Swiss chard, stems and center ribs cut out and chopped together, leaves coarsely chopped separately
1/2 cup dry white wine OR red wine
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice, or to taste
2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese
salt to taste (optional)
Melt butter and olive oil together in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Stir in the garlic and onion, and cook for 30 seconds until fragrant. Add the chard stems and the white wine. Simmer until the stems begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Stir in the chard leaves, and cook until wilted. Finally, stir in lemon juice and Parmesan cheese; season to taste with salt if needed.
These were fantastic! We served them open-faced and I only had to make a couple of very minor adjustments. First, I peeled the eggplant. It's a texture thing...I will admit eggplant skin is not my favorite. Then, I turned on the broiler at the end of the bake time to get the cheese all toasty. Other than that, this recipe is great as-is. Good enough to win over my husband, who is one of the eggplants toughest critics.