Stuffed vegetables have been a popular dish for years but the tendency to use the same old vegetables can make them, dare I say it, a little boring. Why not put a twist on a classic and instead of using peppers try an eggplant instead. This dish involves filling an eggplant with a delicious sausage mix, topped with cheese and covered in a traditional marinara sauce.
Eggplant is not only available throughout the year but is thought to be one of the healthiest vegetables out there as it is packed with vitamins and minerals. It can be a great meat substitute but also works just as well as a compliment to meat such as the Italian sausage in the recipe. To carry on the Italian theme the eggplant is covered in marinara sauce. This traditional sauce made from tomatoes, garlic, onion and herbs works beautifully with the two cheeses and helps tie all the flavours together. If you don’t feel like making your own there are plenty of good quality shop bought sauces available.
This recipe is easily adapted for vegetarians as you simply leave out the sausage. It is a great way of trying a vegetable that many people are not really sure what to do with.
Cook time: 35 minutes
Cook time: 45 minutes
- 2 eggplants cut into halves
- 2 cups of marinara sauce
- ½ tablespoon olive oil
- ½ pound of Italian sausage with skin removed
- 1 small diced onion
- 2 cloves of chopped garlic
- ¼ cup of grated Parmesan
- 1 cup of shredded mozzarella
- Salt and pepper for seasoning
- Basil for garnish
- The centre of the eggplant needs to be removed leaving around half an inch remaining but do not discard the centre as this will be used later.
- The inside of the eggplant should then be coated with a thin layer of oil.
- Preheat oven to 400F and roast eggplant for 10-15 minutes.
- While the eggplant is roasting cook the onion and sausage meat together over a medium heat for 10 minutes. The sausage meat should be broken up whilst cooking.
- Add the garlic and the centre of the eggplant you removed earlier and cook for a further 6 -8 minutes.
- Add 1 cup of marinara sauce with salt and pepper seasoning and cook for a further 5 minutes and then remove pan from heat.
- Pour the second cup of marinara sauce into a baking dish and place the eggplants into the sauce, facing upwards. Now it is time to fill them with the sausage mixture you have just cooked and top with the two cheeses.
- Place dish into an oven preheated to 400F and cook for 15 minutes. The sauce should be bubbling away and all the cheese melted.
- Top with a basil garnish and serve.