Stuffed Sicilian Aubergine

I saw a large, round aubergine at Bohm’s last week and just had to have it.  I’ve seen the miniature purple and white ones before, but this was the first time I’d seen the large variety.  My fruit and vegetable caregiver in Bohm’s told me that it was a Sicilian variety.  Alrighty then!

This recipe is not Sicilian, though the eggplant is.  I did look at some Sicilian recipes on the net but there was way too much talk of including raisins.  I decided to go rogue and  cook something vaguely Italian with whatever I had in the kitchen, cooking the eggplant being the point, not authenticity.

I immediately started to stress about cutting the eggplant; vertical or horizontal?  About how the lovely deep purple would turn to unattractive grayish, brown, collapsed heap in the oven.

I think this was a bad cooking day for me today; I lacked confidence but I really wanted to cook this eggplant.  I cut it horizontally and accepted the nature of oven eggplant.

My lovely Sicilian aubergine cooked up a nut brown AND maintained it’s shape :)  For vegetarian goodness, leave out the ground meat.

Stuffed Sicilian Aubergine

1 large, round Sicilian eggplant

1 cup ground steak

2 tbsp olive oil

1/2 purple onion, chopped

1/2 yellow bell pepper, chopped

2 garlic cloves chopped

4 basil leaves, chopped

1 can diced tomatoes

1/2 tsp sugar

Salt and pepper

1/2 can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed

Olive oil

Crumbled feta

Fresh basil leaves, snipped

Cut the eggplant in half horizontally and hollow both sides out, creating two firm shaped “bowls”.  Chop the eggplant flesh and reserve.

Quickly cook the ground steak in 1 tablespoon of the olive oil.  Remove from the pan and set aside.  Add the other tablespoon of olive oil to the pan and saute the onion, pepper and garlic until the onion is almost soft.  Add the reserved, chopped eggplant and continue to saute the mixture for 2-3 minutes.  Add the basil, sugar and tomatoes, season with salt and pepper then simmer for about 20 minutes.

Spread half the sauce on the bottom of a baking pan.  Mix the other half with the ground steak and beans, then stuff into the eggplant halves.  Put the stuffed halves in the baking pan on top of the sauce, brushing the cut edges with olive oil, cover with aluminum foil and bake in a 350 F oven for 40 minutes.  Remove the aluminum foil and continue to bake for another 15-20 minutes.

Top with feta and basil leaves.

Wine suggestion:  Chianti

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About cookinginsens

An American living in Burgundy, France
This entry was posted in American, Cooking, Food and Wine, Italian, Main dishes, Recipes, Vegetables and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

44 Responses to Stuffed Sicilian Aubergine

  1. cecilia says:

    Just perfect and even though it lost its colour it did hold its shape which was a bonus, and i bet it tasted lovely.. have a wonderful day rosemary.. c

  2. Jon says:

    Looks fantastic!

  3. Tessa says:

    Looks delicious! Is the eggplant about the size of a cantaloupe?

  4. Such beautiful photos! Whenever I view your blog, I am reminded that I must get a new camera and try and take better pictures. Your photos are such an inspiration.

  5. Conor Bofin says:

    That looks lovely. The stand out word in the post is ‘caregiver’. Are you/they serious?
    Best,
    Conor

  6. Mad Dog says:

    I’m completely with you! Your recipe sounds great and much better without raisins, though I have been watching Montalbano lately and really want to visit Sicily soon :-)

  7. I don’t know why I’ve never thought to stuff an eggplant, but this looks delicious!

    • Hi. I’ve stuffed them before and they are good but I don’t like it when they fall apart, are too greasy or turn an unattractive color. Peppers, zucchini and tomatoes hold up better.

  8. These turned out perfectly.. I love that they can be individual servings:)

  9. Looks and sounds fantastic. I am a huge aubergine fan…Big Man less so…but I could just cook this for myself and indulge alone!

  10. createengwp says:

    Thinking of Sicilian food for lunch.

  11. Karista says:

    What a lovely dish. This turned out perfectly! So beautiful even in the shade of nut brown.

  12. My French Heaven says:

    Beautiful! I love stuffed veggies. I stuffed mushrooms myself today. I put pics on my blog if you want to try the recipe:0) Please keep sharing, this is great stuff!

  13. That looks fantastic! What beautiful colors. Bravo, Rosemary!

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  15. rsmacaalay says:

    I made something like this yesterday but instead of stuffing it win aubergines I just baked it in a casserole with chickpeas

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  23. blaqkitty says:

    Oh thank you for sharing. Looks delicious. Does it taste the same as regular eggplant? How did it taste?

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