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Eggplant Tomato Casserole

Healthy Eggplant Tomato Casserole

Eggplant Tomato Casserole is a healthy, vegetarian, Paleo dish that is flavorful, versatile and addictive. Serve it as a vegetarian main dish or a side vegetable.

I really love this particular dish. I ate half of it in a few hours all by myself. It’s a bit reminiscent of ratatouille, but with a different balance of flavors. It can be time consuming if you make it using just one skillet (took me 5 batches of sauteing the eggplant). Use 2 or 3 large skillets and the first stage of cooking the eggplant will be done in 10 minutes or so. The parsley is a key element – I’ve made it twice and doubled the parsley the second time. Also the chiles add a special spiciness to it. I used 1 tbsp of hot green chiles, and I thought the balance was very good (the heat was subtle), but I would also make it with 2-3 times the hot green chiles for a distinctly spicy dish. If you’re making it with mild or medium chiles, increase the amount of chiles and adjust to taste.

I also took the remaining 1/3 of the casserole, put in in a food processor and turned it into a dip. It was fabulous on tortilla chips.

This is a dish I’ll be making again and again. Hope you like it!

Eggplant Tomato Casserole
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 4 servings
Ingredients
  • 2 medium eggplant, sliced about ¼ inch thick
  • Salt
  • Olive oil
  • ¾ cup diced onion (about 1 small)
  • 2 large garlic cloves, pressed
  • ½ tsp dried red chile flakes
  • ⅛ tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp diced hot green chiles (or to taste)
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley (or more to taste), divided
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Lightly sprinkle salt on the eggplant slices and let sit for 20 minutes, then pat dry with paper towels and set aside.
  3. Pour a thin layer of olive oil (1-2 tbsp) in a very large skillet (or 2 large skillets to shorten cooking time) and pan fry the eggplant in batches over medium-high heat till starting to brown, about 3 minutes on each side. Add more oil as needed between batches, but keep it light.
  4. Set the eggplant aside, pour about ½ tbsp olive oil in the skillet, and saute onion until soft, about 5 minutes. Add garlic, chile flakes, cinnamon, and ½ tsp salt. Cook for another minute.
  5. Add the tomatoes, green chiles, and 1 tbsp parsley and simmer until thickened a bit, about 5-10 minutes.
  6. In an oven-proof baking dish, about 9"x9", spread a couple tbsp of the sauce, then a layer of eggplant, more sauce, another layer of eggplant, then top with sauce - like a lasagna. The layers of sauce will be sparse, but it comes out fine.
  7. Cover with a lid or foil and bake for 45 minutes - until the eggplant is completely soft. Allow to sit about 10 minutes before cutting. Garnish with remaining parsley and serve.
  8. Enjoy!
Notes
Commentary:
I really love this particular dish. I ate half of it in a few hours all by myself. It’s a bit reminiscent of ratatouille, but with a different balance of flavors. It can be time consuming if you make it using just one skillet (took me 5 batches of sauteing the eggplant). Use 2 or 3 large skillets and the first stage of cooking the eggplant will be done in 10 minutes or so. The parsley is a key element – I’ve made it twice and doubled the parsley the second time. Also the chiles add a special spiciness to it. I used 1 tbsp of hot green chiles, and I thought the balance was very good (the heat was subtle), but I would also make it with 2-3 times the hot green chiles for a distinctly spicy dish. If you’re making it with mild or medium chiles, increase the amount of chiles and adjust to taste.

I also took the remaining ⅓ of the casserole, put in in a food processor and turned it into a dip. It was fabulous on tortilla chips.

This is a dish I’ll be making again and again. Hope you like it!

 

 

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