Minty Eggplant Rollups recipe can be made in 45 minutes. This is not your typical eggplant dish. The mint and tomato sauce is a super combination and the eggplant doesn't get mushy. Great for a family dinner!
Minty eggplant rollups
Originally called "Nonna Saporito's Eggplant Rolls" and found in Ciao Italia Family Classics by Mary Ann Esposito (I love this cookbook.), this recipe for Minty Eggplant Rollups is a beautiful and delicious way to eat eggplant. As usual, Don and I modified it a little bit. The original recipe doesn't call for chopped Roma tomatoes or Parmesan Cheese, but we added these items because the filling seemed a little skimpy.
Eggplant An Italian Specialty
Esposito says, "Eggplant has occupied star status in the southern Italian kitchen, especially in Sicily where it was first introduced by the Arabs and over the centuries has undergone many changes in preparation and taste."
Don loves eggplant, so I was happy to find a recipe that I really enjoy. I find that eggplant can be rather mushy and the texture is not generally to my liking. This version, however, did not get soggy and I loved it. (I need to make this again, and again, and again.)
What You Need
You will need a good knife, cutting board, measuring cups and spoons, and a baking dish. Add a nice tossed salad in a beautiful bowl and you have supper. Simple elegance.
Minty Eggplant Rollups Recipe
- 1 large eggplant (7-8 inches long, stem removed, cut into 8 ¼-inch-thick lengthwise slices)
- Extra-virgin olive oil
- ⅓ cup minced fresh mint (or 1 teaspoon dried; you can also substitute oregano)
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
- 2 Roma tomatoes (chopped very small)
- ¼ cup Parmesan cheese or Pecorino Romano cheese (shredded—leave out for vegan)
- ½ cup pine nuts
- 1 ½ cups prepared Red Sauce (pasta sauce or spaghetti sauce)
- 1 cup toasted bread crumbs
- Brush the eggplant slices with a little olive oil and grill them on a panini grill for about 8-10 minutes until they are soft and have nice grill lines on them. (Other options are to grill them on an outdoor grill or bake them in the oven at 450F degrees for about 15 minutes.)
- Set them aside to cool.
- Mix the spices, pine nuts, tomatoes and Parmesan cheese in a bowl.
- Spread a couple of tablespoons of the mixture along the length of each eggplant slice, and then roll the slices into small bundles.
- Secure the bundles with a toothpick.
- Spread ½ cup of tomato sauce in the bottom of a 12-inch by 9-inch casserole dish.
- Place the eggplant bundles in single rows in the dish and spread the remaining sauce evenly over the top.
- Cover the dish with aluminum foil and bake for 25 minutes.
- Uncover, sprinkle a little Parmesan cheese over the top, if desired, and bake for 5 minutes longer. Sprinkle bread crumbs over the top just before serving.
- Serve hot.
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- Egyptian Eggplant
- Roasted Eggplant Quinoa Salad
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- 3 Cheese Vegetarian Eggplant Parmesan
- Grilled Eggplant Parmesan
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