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Eggplant involtini - half eaten in a large white plate
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Eggplant Involtini Recipe

This eggplant involtini recipe is made by rolling slices of oven-baked eggplant with basil-ricotta mixture and baking it in a homemade tomato sauce. Serve it as a vegetarian main course or as a side dish to accompany any meat dishes. Either way, it is easy-to-make and delicious.
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Italian
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 4 servings
Calories 306kcal

Ingredients

  • 2 eggplants each approximately1 1/2 half lbs.*
  • 5 +1 tablespoons olive oil divided
  • 1 cup ricotta cheese preferably homemade
  • 3/4 cup Pecorino Romano cheese Or Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup bread crumbs
  • 1/2 + 1/4 cup fresh basil chopped – divided
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice freshly squeezed
  • Kosher Salt and Pepper
  • 1 28 ounces can of diced tomatoes
  • 3 cloves of garlic minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon oregano
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes

Instructions

To prepare eggplant:

  • Pre-heat your oven to 375 F Degrees.
  • Peel the eggplants. Cut them lengthwise into 6 slices. Each slice should be about 1/2 inch thick. Trim the rounded ends so that they will lay flat.
  • Cover two baking sheets with parchment paper and spray them generously with cooking spray. Place 6 eggplant slices on each baking sheet.
  • Start with the first baking sheet. Brush each eggplant slice with two and a half tablespoons of olive oil (you use the 2.5 tbs olive oil to brush all of the slices) and season it with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Flip each slice and do the same thing for the other side. Repeat the same process for the second baking sheet.
  • Place both sheets in the oven and bake for 30-35 minutes, or until they are tender and lightly browned. To ensure even baking, switch and rotate sheets half way through the baking process.
  • When eggplants are baked, let them cool for 5 minutes. Do not turn the oven off. Heat the broiler.

To make the filling:

  • Place 1 cup of homemade ricotta cheese (or full-fat supermarket ricotta cheese), 1/2 cup bread crumbs, 1/2 cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese, 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Stir until they are all combined. Set aside.

To make the tomato sauce:

  • Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large ovenproof skillet (I used my 10-inch cast iron skillet).
  • Add the garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, oregano, and a pinch of red pepper flakes. Stir them with a wooden spatula and cook for 30 seconds.
  • Stir in the tomatoes and cook in medium low heat, until it thickens.
  • At the very end, add the rest of the chopped basil (1/2 cup),give it a large stir, cover, and set aside.

To assemble:

  • Using a spatula, flip each slice over. With the widest side of the eggplant slices facing you, evenly distribute the ricotta mixture onto each slice. Starting from the widest end, gently roll each piece and place it, seamed side down, in the pan with the tomato sauce.
  • Bring it to a simmer over medium heat. Allow it to cook for 5 minutes.
  • Place it in the oven and broil for 5 minutes for the eggplants to be browned and the cheese to cook thoroughly.

To finish:

  • Sprinkle it with 1/4 cup of grated Pecorino Romano and 2 tablespoons of chopped fresh parsley.
  • Serve.

Video

Notes

  • When you are shopping for eggplants I recommend buying shorter and wider ones that are similar in size. I also recommend making sure that they are sliced around 1/2-inch thick, which should give you 5-6 slices per eggplant.
  • The plate I used in the video is a 10-inch plate, but you can use any oven-proof dish or cast-iron skillet as well.
  • If you watch the video, you will see that instead of cooking the rolled eggplant in the tomato sauce (as it is written in the recipe) I baked it in the oven. I think it is easier to make the oven do the work for you but either method would work.

Nutrition

Calories: 306kcal | Carbohydrates: 27g | Protein: 17g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 51mg | Sodium: 381mg | Potassium: 641mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 404IU | Vitamin C: 7mg | Calcium: 376mg | Iron: 2mg