Purple and blue foods are known for their extra antioxidant goodness that helps keep you healthy. Low in nickel, I absolutely love to eat eggplant.
Using stainless steel cookie sheets to bake, I use parchment paper instead of aluminum foil to create a barrier between the food I cook and the stainless steel cookie sheet. These days spray cooking oils can contain soy. My preferred brand of cooking spray oils is Winona Pure spray canola oil and olive oil.
This recipe is pretty straightforward, but there are a bunch of steps. Reading the recipe first before you start will make it easier to make and prepare. If you’re really hungry, I’d choose to make something else, as this stuffed eggplant meal takes a little over an hour to make. Having said that, I still encourage you to try this recipe as it is an all-time favorite that’s satisfying every time!
1 large eggplant
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 white onion
1 red pepper
2 stalks of celery
1 pound of lean ground beef
½ teaspoon of ground black pepper
½ cup bread crumbs (check label to make sure doesn’t include soy)
Parmesan cheese (optional)
¼ to ½ cup fresh parsley
The Recipe Steps:
Line one cookie sheet with parchment paper, spray lightly with cooking oil and set aside.
Wash the outside of eggplant and cut off the green stem at the top. Cut the eggplant in half, lengthwise. Using a spoon, scoop out the inside of the eggplants or the pulp and set it aside. Leave a thin layer of the pulp all the way around the inside of the eggplant. Place the two eggplant halves on the cookie sheet with the parchment paper.
Cut up the reserved eggplant pulp pieces, placing them in a small saucepan that is ½ or ¾ full of water and cover with the lid. Using the smallest saucepan available, boil on medium high for about 10 minutes or until it’s soft.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Dice one medium onion, red pepper and two celery stalks. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil on medium heat in a ceramic saucepan, sautéing the diced vegetables, adding course ground pepper to taste. Add the pound of lean ground beef and cook beef thoroughly. Drain beef fat or sop up with paper towel.
Carefully add softened, drained eggplant pulp into a large mixing bowl, as everything will be very hot! Mix the softened pulp, beef and sautéed vegetables to the bowl, mix in diced tomatoes, 1 egg and only ¼ cup of the breadcrumbs.
Fill eggplant shells with meat and vegetable mixture, sprinkling them with the remaining ¼ cup of bread crumbs on top. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese (optional).
Bake the stuffed eggplant uncovered in the oven for 45-50 minutes. Let it cool for about 5 minutes and then place fresh parsley on top. My partner also loves to add more parmesan cheese and Franks RedHot sauce (which also doesn’t contain nickel) if you prefer spicy. Enjoy!