- For the filling
- For the sauce
- Preheat the oven to 180C/355F/Gas 4.
- Season the aubergine slices well with salt and freshly ground black pepper and brush with oil.
- Griddle for a couple of minutes on each side in a hot griddle pan, or until golden-brown grill marks are formed. Remove from the pan and drain on kitchen paper.
- For the filling, mix the ricotta, mozzarella, nutmeg and spring onions together in a bowl.
- Lay out all of the slices of aubergine onto a clean surface. Place about one teaspoon of filling at the bottom edge of each one.
- Roll up the aubergine slices, like a cigar, around the filling, then rest them seam-side down on a plate.
- For the sauce, heat the olive oil in a pan and add the cherry tomatoes.
- Simmer for 8-10 minutes until the tomatoes begin to break down.
- Remove from the heat and stir in the garlic and sugar. Season, to taste, with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
- Spoon some of the sauce into the bottom of an ovenproof dish.
- Carefully place the aubergine rolls, seam-side down onto the sauce, and spoon over the rest of the sauce.
- Transfer to the oven and bake for 12-15 minutes, until the cheese begins to melt.
- To serve, spoon the rolls onto plates.
The recipe came from a BBC site, where they call eggplants "aubergines!" There were also a few other British words in the recipe that I just did the best I could to interpret and do correctly. I don't know what spring onions are, but I just diced half a regular onion and sauteed it a little before mixing it with the cheese. I also left out the nutmeg because I thought that sounded weird. :) Finally, I just used prepared spaghetti sauce to top them instead of making my own with cherry tomatoes. Big time saver there!
These were delicious, although they took longer to make than I expected. I used my Pampered Chef grill pan to grill them, and that worked great, just took a long time since it only held 4 or 5 slices at a time. (I also used olive oil cooking spray instead of brushing the slices with olive oil, but I DO NOT recommend doing that... The spray ended up burning onto my grill pan and being very difficult to get off!) The grilled eggplant was very tasty, though, and I bet at some point I'll just make grilled eggplant as a vegetable side dish!
So this one was very tasty, but a bit too much effort to make all the time. A nice special treat for my eggplant-loving husband, though!
I served them with Oven Roasted Garlic Green Beans, which were delicious, but for us needed to be cooked longer than the 8 minutes the recipe calls for. Next time I'll probably do like 15 minutes, which I bet would be just right for us!