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Eggplant Rolls Filled
with Basil and Cheese

 

 

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Basil, Cheese, Tomatoes and Olive Oil
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Eggplant Rolls Filled with
Basil and Cheese

Gourmet September 1992

For the tomato sauce
1 onion, chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 small garlic clove, minced
2 pounds tomatoes, chopped coarse
a pinch of sugar

For the eggplant rolls
a 1-pound eggplant
1 cup grated mozzarella (about 1/4 pound)
3 1/2 ounces (about 1/2 cup) mild, soft
goat cheese such as Montrachet,
at room temperature
1/4 cup shredded fresh basil leaves
2 to 3 tablespoons olive oil

Fresh basil leaves for garnish

Make the tomato sauce: In a heavy skillet cook the onion in the oil over moderately low heat, stirring, for 3 minutes, stir in the garlic, and cook the mixture, stirring, until the onion is softened. Add the tomatoes, the sugar,
and salt to taste and cook the mixture over moderate heat, stirring, for 20
minutes. Force the mixture through the fine disk of a food mill set over a
saucepan and cook the sauce over moderately high heat for 5 to 10
minutes, or until it is thickened to the desired consistency.
Make the eggplant rolls
: With a hand-held slicing device or large sharp
knife cut the eggplant
lengthwise into 1/4-inch slices. Sprinkle the slices
on both sides with salt and let them drain in a colander for 30 minutes.
In a bowl stir together the mozzarella, the goat cheese, and the shredded
basil. Pat the eggplant dry, arrange one layer of it on the oiled rack of a
broiler pan, and brush it with some of the oil. Broil the eggplant under a preheated broiler about 4 inches from the heat for 3 to 4 minutes, or until
it is golden. Turn the eggplant, brush it with some of the remaining oil,
and broil it for 3 to 4 minutes more, or until it is golden. Transfer the
eggplant to a large platter to cool and broil the remaining eggplant, brush-
ing it with the remaining oil, in the same manner.
Spread a mounded teaspoon of the cheese mixture lengthwise down the
middle of each eggplant slice, leaving a 1-inch border at the wide end,
and, beginning at the narrow end, roll up the eggplant jelly-roll fashion.
Arrange the rolls, seam sides down, in an oiled flameproof shallow
baking dish just large enough to hold them in one layer and broil them
for 3 minutes, or until the cheese is just melted and bubbling.
Transfer the eggplant rolls with a spatula to serving plates, spoon the
tomato sauce over them, and garnish the rolls with the basil leaves.
Makes about 12 rolls, serving 4 as a first course or 6 as a side dish.


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