Baked Stuffed Eggplants

This recipe is paleo-adapted from one I found at the Eating Well website. To make it compliant, I took the sugar out and completely ignored it. Tried on Day 3 of my Whole30, and loved it. So I just bought some more eggplant this week to do it again. After posting the recipe on my Whole30 website, a friend who was doing the program with me tried it too and loved. Below is my version of the recipe.

  • 2 small-to-medium Italian eggplants (6-8 inches long, 10-12 ounces each)
  • 3 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 teaspoon salt, divided into 1/4 and 3/4
  • 1 large onion
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 large green bell pepper, cut lengthwise into quarters (will use mini mixed peppers next time, as it’s what I currently have at home)
  • 3 tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup plus 3 tablespoons chopped parsley, divided
  • 2 bay leaves

Preheat oven to 400°F. Coat a large roasting pan with olive or avocado oil.

Remove leaves from eggplants, but leave the stems on. Cut the eggplants in half lengthwise, through the stem. Using a small sharp knife, make a deep slit lengthwise down the flesh side of each eggplant half: start about 1 inch below the stem and stop about 1 inch from the bottom. Do not cut completely through the skin.

Brush the eggplant all over with 2 tablespoons oil. Sprinkle the eggplant flesh with 1/4 teaspoon salt. Place cut-side down in the prepared roasting pan and bake for 15 minutes.

While the eggplants bake, quarter and thinly slice onion. Finely chop garlic. Thinly slice 1 bell pepper quarter  (or 1 mini pepper) and set aside; dice the remaining pepper. Cut 1 tomato into 4 wedges and set aside; dice the remaining 2 tomatoes.

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic; cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the diced bell pepper, the diced tomatoes, 1/2 cup parsley,  bay leaves and the remaining 3/4 teaspoon salt. Cook, stirring, for 3 minutes. Remove from heat; discard bay leaves.

After the eggplant has baked, remove it from the oven, carefully turn each eggplant half over and use 2 spoons to open and widen the slits. Stuff the slits with the vegetable mixture, pressing it down gently. Place a wedge of tomato in the middle of each half; evenly divide the reserved sliced pepper among the halves.

Add 1/4 inch hot water to the roasting pan. Drizzle the eggplant with the remaining 2 teaspoons oil. Bake 30 minutes more.

Let cool for a few minutes and serve warm, or cool completely, refrigerate and serve cold. Garnish with the remaining 3 tablespoons parsley.

BakedStuffedEggplant

Adapted from Eating Well website

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