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Eggplant Involtini

Eggplant Involtini


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I think I have already said this before, but eggplant is one of my favorite vegetables. You can make so many things with it and it always tastes so good! Here's the recipe for what has to be my all-time favorite side dish that can easily double up as an appetizer: involtini di melanzane, aka eggplant involtini. It is my mum's recipe and like all "mum's recipes" they are hard to beat.

The filling is the same as the one used for meat involtini, but the addition of tomato sauce and Parmigiano on top makes them even tastier… They are great eaten warm or cold, but I like them more at room temperature as I find that the taste of all the different ingredients comes together better that way. They are not hard to prepare and you can make them in advance (even the day before) and bake them when needed, or you could even bake them and eat them cold later on. Try them, I am sure they will not disappoint! These involtini are a regional Italian dish from Sicily!

See all pasta recipes.

Ingredients

For the tomato sauce

  • 1 Tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 Tablespoon chopped onion
  • 1 1/2 Cup tomato purée
  • Salt, to taste
  • 3 basil leaves

For the filling

  • 2 Tablespoons finely chopped onion
  • 3/4 Ounces salami, chopped finely
  • 1 Ounce piquant provolone, diced finely
  • 2 Tablespoons finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • 1/2 Cup breadcrumbs
  • 2 Tablespoons canned diced tomatoes
  • 3 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more to taste
  • 1 Teaspoon chopped parsley (optional)
  • Pinch of salt

For the involtini

  • Ten 1/2-inch-thick slices fried eggplant, cut lengthwise
  • Vegetable oil, for frying
  • 3 Tablespoons finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano

Involtini – Eggplant Ricotta Rolls

Welcome autumn! This post just might make it under the wire before eggplant and tomatoes go out of season. This transition into fall, with the days getting perceptively shorter, and the election looming closer, feels weirdly bizarre and significant. I’m happy to be here in Sonoma County where our farmers gift us with the fruits (and veggies) of their labor. I am so very grateful. The future is unknown, but for now, I can make it better by supporting local farmers and eating foods in season. So, with all of that in mind, I give you ….. Involtini….

The Italian verb – involtare – means to wrap up or envelope, hence the name involtini. One of my favorite Italian cookbooks, Spoon, lists no less than 22 types of involtini. The French call these roll-ups roulades.

A popular version in northern Italy might include a slice of veal wrapped around a filling of spinach, carrots, and mozzarella. In the south of Italy, sliced eggplant or zucchini would be wrapped around a ricotta filling.

The possibilities for the outer wrap are endless: Use a cabbage leaf, a radicchio leaf, a lengthwise slice of zucchini or eggplant, a strip of leek, roasted bell pepper, and for the meat-eaters, prosciutto, bresaola, veal, or beef.

I adapted this eggplant involtini recipe from Tartine, the book by Chad Robertson that has become the bible of sourdough bread baking. Because of the use of bread crumbs, they include this involuti recipe in the chapter on days-old bread. In Italy, bread has sacred qualities and should never be wasted. Also, this recipe provides instructions for tomato sauce, but feel free to use your own version or favorite tomato sauce.


Recipe courtesy of Vegetables Illustrated, from America's Test Kitchen

  • 2 large eggplants (1 ½ pounds each), peeled
  • 6 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 garlic doves, minced
  • ¼ teaspoon dried oregano
  • Pinch red pepper flakes
  • 1 (28-ounce) can whole peeled tomatoes, drained with juice reserved, chopped
  • 1 slice hearty white sandwich bread, torn into 1-inch pieces
  • 8 ounces (1 cup) whole-milk ricotta cheese
  • 1½ ounces Pecorino Romano cheese, grated (¾ cup)
  • ¼ cup plus 1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice

Slice each eggplant lengthwise into ½-inch thick planks (you should have 12 planks). Trim rounded surface from each end piece so it lies flat.

Adjust 1 oven rack to lower-middle position and second rack 8 inches from broiler element. Heat oven to 375 degrees. Line 2 rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper and spray with vegetable oil spray.

Arrange eggplant slices in single layer on prepared sheets. Brush 1 side of eggplant slices with 2½ tablespoons oil and sprinkle with ¼ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Flip eggplant slices and brush with 2½ tablespoons oil and sprinkle with ¼ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Bake until tender and lightly browned, 30 to 35 minutes, switching and rotating sheets halfway through baking. Let cool for 5 minutes. Using thin spatula, flip each slice. Heat broiler.

While eggplant cooks, heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil in 12-inch broiler-safe skillet over medium-low heat until just shimmering. Add garlic, oregano, pepper flakes, and ¼ teaspoon salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in tomatoes and their juice. Increase heat to high and bring to simmer. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until thickened, about 15 minutes. Cover and set aside.

Pulse bread in food processor until finely ground, 10 to 15 pulses. Combine bread crumbs, ricotta, ½ cup Pecorino, ¼ cup basil, lemon juice, and ¼ teaspoon salt in bowl. With widest ends of eggplant slices facing you, evenly distribute ricotta mixture on bottom third of each slice. Gently roll up each eggplant slice and place seam side down in tomato sauce.

Bring sauce to simmer over medium heat. Simmer for 5 minutes. Transfer skillet to oven and broil until eggplant is well browned and cheese Is warmed through, 5 to 10 minutes.

Sprinkle with remaining ¼ cup Pecorino and let stand for 5 minutes. Sprinkle with remaining 1 tablespoon basil and serve.


Eggplant Involtini

Preheat your oven to 375 F and line a baking sheet with parchment. Prep your eggplant by brushing each side of the eggplant slices with olive oil and lay flat on your parchment-lined tray. Sprinkle each side with sea salt.

Bake eggplant for about 15 minutes, flipping half-way. Remove from heat and set aside.

Prep your ricotta by crumbling the tofu into a large bowl and add crumble in your cheese. Mix everything with a fork until the tofu and cheese is thoroughly combined. Then add the remaining ingredients (seasonings, breadcrumbs, lemon juice) and mix until thoroughly combined.

Get a 9x9 or 11x7 casserole dish and dump the marinara at the bottom.

Take each eggplant slice and add about 1.5 Tbsp of the ricotta seasoning into the end of the eggplant and roll up. Place the eggplant roll into the dish. Repeat with the rest of the eggplant, reserving some of the ricotta mixture for topping the dish.

Once all eggplant has been rolled up and placed in the dish, take the remaining ricotta and sprinkle it on top. Bake for an additional 15-20 minutes.


Eggplant Involtini

As noted above, Eggplant Involtini is very similar to Eggplant Parmesan. Instead of layering slices of eggplant (like when you make lasagna), you simply fill the slices of eggplant with ricotta and then roll ’em up. However, there are two tricks for making this recipe.

The first trick is salting the eggplant and letting it rest. And when I say salting, I mean salting. I used

2 Tbsp of kosher salt sprinkled across the tops of

15 slices of eggplant. Then you let it rest for a full hour or two. Salting the eggplant helps draw out excess moisture. Don’t worry about the eggplant tasting too salty, though. You rinse the slices with water and press ’em gently with paper towels before roasting.

The second trick? Roasting the eggplant. Unlike traditional Eggplant Parmesan where the eggplant is pan-fried, I opted for roasting the eggplant in a hot oven. Roasting the eggplant softens it up a bit so that it’s easier to roll in the next step. Plus, roasting the eggplant adds a ton of flavor! I’ve also heard of a version where the eggplant slices are grilled. How tasty does that sound!?

Lemon + Parsley Ricotta

Just to mix things up a bit, I played with the flavor profile of the ricotta filling in this recipe. Instead of traditional Italian herbs, I went with a brighter, lemony flavor. The fresh tang of the lemon ricotta filling was quite delicious! However, if you want to go with a more traditional version, you could omit the lemon juice and lemon zest and use dried Italian herbs instead. Oh, and I bet some cooked Italian sausage would be delicious in this filling. Next time…next time…

For this recipe, I included my basic go-to Italian sauce. I seriously make this sauce probably once a week. It starts with canned San Marzano plum tomatoes and sauteed onions. It’s a simple sauce, but it’s delicious! I highly recommend adding this one to your list. However, if you prefer jarred sauce, you can totally go that way – you’ll need

Oh, and just for the record, this Eggplant Involtini makes for some pretty fantastic leftovers! Enjoy!

Did you make this Eggplant Involtini at home? Leave a comment, or better yet snap a photo and tag me on Instagram (@Spicedblog)!


Healthy Recipes

Place eggplant slices in a colander and sprinkle with a good pinch of kosher salt to pull the water and bitterness out. Allow eggplant to sit for approximately 30 minutes.

Pat dry

Remove from colander and place eggplant on clean dry cutting board, pat dry with paper towel.

Dip eggplant

Using 2 plates or shallow bowls place beaten egg in one plate and flour in another. Dip each eggplant slice in egg then flour.

Heat enough oil to coat the bottom of a large sauté pan. Cook eggplant till golden brown (about 3 minutes per side). Set on paper towels to drain.

Defrost spinach

While waiting on the eggplant, defrost spinach in a strainer over a bowl. Once defrosted use a clean dishtowel or your hands to squeeze remaining water out till dry.

Sauté onion and garlic

Heat oil in a pan and sauté onion for approximately 5 minutes add garlic and cook for another 5 minutes until onion and garlic are translucent.

Remove from heat and place in mixing bowl, add spinach, egg, salt, and pepper. Mix well.

Preheat oven
Roll eggplant

Lay the eggplant on a cutting board and spread 1-2 tablespoon(s) of spinach mixture on each eggplant slice and roll them up.

Add marinara

Place 1–2 tablespoon(s) of marinara on the bottom of a shallow baking dish. Arrange the eggplant rolls side by side in the baking dish.

Pour remaining marinara

Pour remaining marinara sauce over the eggplant.

Cover with foil and bake 25 minutes. Uncover and bake another 10 minutes until the eggplant is soft and golden.

Chef's Note:

You can use all-purpose flour in place of almond flour. After baking for 25 minutes, you can grate some fresh parmesan cheese over the top then bake for 10 minutes more till cheese is golden.


How To Cook Eggplant For Diet Guide

How To Cook Eggplant For Diet. If it still feels somewhat tough, cook for another 30 minutes and repeat the test. How to lose belly fat after a baby.

how to cook eggplant for diet, Image source from www.pinterest.com

Discover more about what eggplant is and how to cook with eggplant. With its soft texture and sometimes slightly bitter taste, it can get a bad rap.

Keto Eggplant Involtini Ketogenic Recipes Food Recipes

Perfect as part of a mezze platter, or simply served on its own, this healthy, cheesy eggplant will even satisfy a carb lover. This recipe is acceptable for those who are on b blood type diet and/or food combining.

Keto stuffed eggplant eggplant recipes eggplant. If it still feels somewhat tough, cook for another 30 minutes and repeat the test.

How to cook a small white eggplant. How to lose belly fat after a baby.

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Stuffed eggplant with orzo pasta recipe in 2020 with. With its soft texture and sometimes slightly bitter taste, it can get a bad rap.

17 day diet diary spicy eggplant parmesan c1 17 day. Perfect as part of a mezze platter, or simply served on its own, this healthy, cheesy eggplant will even satisfy a carb.

Mediterranean couscous stuffed eggplant with tahini sauce. This recipe is acceptable for those who are on b blood type diet and/or food combining.


Ingredients

  • 2 medium eggplants (about 2 pounds total)
  • Kosher salt
  • ½ of a (10-ounce) box frozen chopped spinach, thawed
  • 1 ½ cups fresh ricotta
  • ¾ cup freshly grated Grana Padano
  • 1 ½ cups low-moisture mozzarella, grated
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
  • 3 large eggs
  • 3 cups prepared tomato sauce
  • Vegetable oil, for frying
  • All-purpose flour
  • Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling

Recipe courtesy of Vegetables Illustrated, from America's Test Kitchen

  • 2 large eggplants (1 ½ pounds each), peeled
  • 6 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 garlic doves, minced
  • ¼ teaspoon dried oregano
  • Pinch red pepper flakes
  • 1 (28-ounce) can whole peeled tomatoes, drained with juice reserved, chopped
  • 1 slice hearty white sandwich bread, torn into 1-inch pieces
  • 8 ounces (1 cup) whole-milk ricotta cheese
  • 1½ ounces Pecorino Romano cheese, grated (¾ cup)
  • ¼ cup plus 1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice

Slice each eggplant lengthwise into ½-inch thick planks (you should have 12 planks). Trim rounded surface from each end piece so it lies flat.

Adjust 1 oven rack to lower-middle position and second rack 8 inches from broiler element. Heat oven to 375 degrees. Line 2 rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper and spray with vegetable oil spray.

Arrange eggplant slices in single layer on prepared sheets. Brush 1 side of eggplant slices with 2½ tablespoons oil and sprinkle with ¼ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Flip eggplant slices and brush with 2½ tablespoons oil and sprinkle with ¼ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Bake until tender and lightly browned, 30 to 35 minutes, switching and rotating sheets halfway through baking. Let cool for 5 minutes. Using thin spatula, flip each slice. Heat broiler.

While eggplant cooks, heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil in 12-inch broiler-safe skillet over medium-low heat until just shimmering. Add garlic, oregano, pepper flakes, and ¼ teaspoon salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in tomatoes and their juice. Increase heat to high and bring to simmer. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until thickened, about 15 minutes. Cover and set aside.

Pulse bread in food processor until finely ground, 10 to 15 pulses. Combine bread crumbs, ricotta, ½ cup Pecorino, ¼ cup basil, lemon juice, and ¼ teaspoon salt in bowl. With widest ends of eggplant slices facing you, evenly distribute ricotta mixture on bottom third of each slice. Gently roll up each eggplant slice and place seam side down in tomato sauce.

Bring sauce to simmer over medium heat. Simmer for 5 minutes. Transfer skillet to oven and broil until eggplant is well browned and cheese Is warmed through, 5 to 10 minutes.

Sprinkle with remaining ¼ cup Pecorino and let stand for 5 minutes. Sprinkle with remaining 1 tablespoon basil and serve.


Eggplant Involtini with Grilled Ratatouille

Faux cheeses made with nuts are key to vegan cooking. To stuff these involtini, chef Sean Baker of Gather in Berkeley re-creates the flavor of ricotta by combining pureed raw cashews with nutritional yeast, which has a very savory, almost cheese-like flavor and is available at well-stocked specialty and natural food stores.

  1. In a food processor, combine the cashews with the nutritional yeast and water and process to a fine paste. Transfer the paste to a bowl, stir in the olives and season with salt and pepper.
  2. Light a grill. Brush the eggplant slices (there should be about 24) with olive oil and grill over moderately high heat, turning once, until tender and lightly charred, 2 to 3 minutes. Arrange the eggplant on a work surface and season with salt and pepper. Spoon 1 tablespoon of the cashew filling onto one end of each eggplant slice. Roll into tight cylinders. Cover with plastic wrap.
  3. Brush all of the vegetables with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill the vegetables in batches until tender and lightly charred, about 3 minutes for the tomatoes and 6 minutes for the onions, peppers, eggplant, and zucchini. Transfer the grilled tomatoes to a blender and puree until smooth.
  4. Peel, seed, and dice the peppers and chop the onions. Add them to a large deep skillet along with the 2 tablespoons of oil and the garlic, bay leaf, thyme, and oregano. Cook over moderately high heat until tender, 5 minutes. Add the wine and boil until evaporated, 2 minutes. Add the tomato puree and water, season with salt and pepper, and simmer until the sauce is slightly reduced, 15 minutes. Cut the eggplant and zucchini into 1/2-inch pieces add to the skillet. Simmer 10 minutes longer. Discard the bay leaf and stir in the basil.
  5. Spoon the ratatouille into shallow bowls and top with the involtini. Spoon a dollop of harissa on top and serve right away.