Although there were five Mondays in the month of March, there were only two Tapas Mondays at our house. Due to a hectic business schedule, only the first and last Mondays were available for such a designation. While I could be an independent woman and eat tapas alone at 9:00, it really isn’t as fun as it might sound. . .
So, after a 3-week hiatus from tapas, I was ready to create a meal consisting of new dishes. With our love for cheeses (especially melted cheese), I knew I had to include some in our menu. As I had seen a recipe for a puttanesca sauce that I wanted to try, I thought the sauce would be a great accompaniment for some sort of cheese filled dish. Rather than going with a heavy pasta dish, I decided to use thin slices of eggplant as the container for the cheese.
Using ricotta and mozzarella cheeses, the eggplant had a tasty, gooey filling. Served with the puttanesca sauce on the side, there was a wide array of flavors to enjoy. The one disappointment to this dish was its appearance. Between using only cheeses as the filling and not dipping the entire roll in a coating of egg and bread crumbs, the melted cheeses leaked out the sides of the roll. However, if you don’t mind eating a dish that looks less than perfect, you will be rewarded with a dish that tastes delicious!
- 1 eggplant, sliced thin lengthwise
- 1 cup ricotta cheese
- 4 oz. fresh mozzarella, cubed
- 1 tsp. dried oregano
- fresh ground black pepper
- puttanesca sauce
- Bring a large pot of salted water to boiling.
- Discard both “end” pieces of eggplant that are mainly skin and add remaining eggplant slices to boiling water.
- Cook for 2-3 minutes, or until tender.
- Remove slices carefully, and place on paper towels to drain.
- In a medium sized bowl, combine ricotta and mozzarella.
- Season with oregano and pepper.
- Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and coat with nonstick cooking spray.
- Place one eggplant strip on prepared baking sheet, and top one half of the strip with 2 tablespoons of cheese mixture.
- Fold the other half of the eggplant over cheese.
- Continue with remaining eggplant and cheese.
- Place in a 375° oven and bake for 15 minutes.
- Serve with puttanesca sauce.