When Adele first told me about her lovely dish I was very excited to get this on camera for you. Actually seeing this eggplant timbale being unmolded when you release the sping form pan its baked in is a whole other story! It really is one of the prettiest dishes I have ever seen not to mention it’s absolutely delicious. The pasta filling is exactly like my“Lazy Mans Lasagna” and then you have the outer wrapping of the fried eggpant slices that bring the flavors to another dimension.
I love this dish beacuse it’s fairly easy to make if you can plan ahead. Now if you have not been frying eggplant your whole life as Adele and I have there certainly would be no shame whatsoever in going to your local Italian deli around the corner and buying already fried eggplant slices! While you are there you can pick up the meatballs too. Then all you will need to do is assemble this magnificent dish. Taking advantage of this convenience allows for last minute planning here which can be a godsend! Trust me you will have as much fun as Adele and I did putting it together. When you present this eggplant timbale at your next holiday dinner the ooh’s and aah’s alone will have you sold!
When you make this eggplant timbale for your next holiday dinner you’ll need some easy holiday appetizers like Baked Asparagus Wrapped in Prosciutto, Crostini w/Gorganzola, Tomato & Basil, and Goat Cheese, Fig Jam, Fresh Pear & Mint in Pre-Baked “Fillo” Cups! My Gourmet Caesar Salad is a must, and some Zucchini Torta would be a nice surprise for your guests also! This Chocolate Pecan Pie is to die for and don’t forget my chewy chocolate chip cookies for the kids.
NOTE: If you are making your own eggplant you can switch out the bread crumbs to flour-either way will be delish….she dips her eggplant slices in flour first, then egg and then she fries the eggplant same as in my eggplant parm recipe except she doesn’t use bread crumbs
2 cups shredded part skim or whole milk mozzarella, plus 2/3 – 1 cup for topping (use the packaged mozz. here not fresh)
2 cup whole milk ricotta cheese
2/3 cup grated Reggiano Parmesan
3 extra lg eggs whisked
8 cups tomato-basil pasta sauce(4 cups to mix in with pasta, 2 cups to top timbale and 2 cups to serve on the side for extra)
(1)- 9″ spring form pan
Pre-heat oven to 450º
Cook 1 lb. rigatoni pasta until ADENTE, a little firm because you will continue to cook the pasta when you bake it in the oven
Drain the aldente pasta BUT do not rinse!
Add cooked pasta to a large bowl
Add in whisked eggs, ricotta, mozzarella, Parmesan and mix to combine
Now pour sauce in and mix gently to combine again
Add in broken up meatballs and gently mix
Spray spring form pan with Pam
Lay prepared eggplant slices all around pan meeting in the center like a flower with edges folding back out of pan
Add pasta mixture into the center of the eggplant drapped spring form pan
Fold over the eggplant slices covering the pasta filling
Add the last 9th piece of eggplant to cover the opening in the middle where the eggplant doesn’t reach
Pour 2 cups sauce over the top of the eggplant timbale, sprinkle with parm & then 2/3 – 1 cup sliced mozzarella
Put timbale into pre-heated 450º oven and bake 5 minutes
Turn oven down to 400º and bake 20 minutes more until bubbly
Take out and let sit 15 minutes…very important to do this
After 15 minutes release spring-form pan from eggplant
Carefully slice timbale and serve with a sprinkle of Parmesan and a side gravy boat for extra sauce
There’s nothing like homemade Pickled Eggplant with thinly sliced strands of eggplant delicately flavored by vinegar, garlic, red hot chili pepper’s, oil-cured black olives and capers all nestled in an olive oil bath. The oil-cured, black olives, add a burst of rich, meaty, sweetness and then there’s a little pucker from the capers. Similar to the oil-cured olives, the eggplant become’s sweet in the beginning of the pickling process when the salt pulls out all the moisture and bitterness.
When Nancy first gave me a jar of her delectable pickled eggplant I knew I would have to get the recipe. Not only is her pickled eggplant to die for but everything she cooks is of the same standard, absolutely delicious! Along with inspiring me in the kitchen, Nancy had the same effect on me on the golf course when I first started playing 8 years ago. She has such tenacity and determination when playing I call her the fiesty golfer! Considering how difficult the game of golf can be, she’s the perfect person to learn the game with.
I had so much fun at Nancy’s house last week making her pickled eggplant. It’s so worth the effort you put into making your own, a most rewarding process when you taste the final product. All of these incredible flavors come together to make an amazing eggplant appetizer like you’ve never had before! You just can’t buy this in the stores!
10 cups distilled white vinegar – 3/4 of gallon jug
10 cups water
4 cups olive oil
approx 1/2 container of Mortons salt… use 1/3 cup per eggplant
2 cups Italian black oil cured olives – seedless
1 long hot red pepper
2 tbsp capers
8 lg garlic cloves coarsely chopped
1 tbsp dried oregano OR 2 tbsp fresh oregano dried in the microwave
1 large pickling crock
2 clean white cotton pillow cases
1 extra large bowl to tranfer wet eggplant in pillow cases back and forth from washing machine
a case of canning jars
Peel and slice all 9 eggplants into 1/8″ thick pieces
Stack slices and cut into 1/8″ strips
Place cut up strips into large pickling crock
After the addition of each cut up eggpant sprinkle in about 1/3 cup salt and mix strips around with salt by hand
Go thru all 9 eggplant making sure to spinkle 1/3 cup salt after addition
Place a small dish on top of all the sliced eggplant so that the dish fits into the crock
Place the gallon jug of vinegar onto dish and let sit 2-3 hours
Remove vinegar bottle weight and plate from crock – at this point there will be a lot of dark brown juice extracted from the eggplant
Transfer eggplant to a clean pillow case a handful at a time leaving behind the brown juice
Divide all the eggplant into 2 pillow cases and tie off the ends into knots so as the eggplant doesn’t come out when you “spin” it in the washer
Rinse out the pickling crock
Take the two pillow cases full of eggplant to the washer and put on “spin” cycle only – NO WATER
After spin stops, remove eggplant from pillow cases & place back into crock (save pillow cases in a large bowl ready to use one more time before cleaning)
Add in chopped garlic cloves and sliced hot pepper
Bring 10 cups vinegar/10 cups water to a rapid boil
Pour vinegar/water mix over eggplant strands in crock
Stir breifly to mix and cover
Let ferment until cooled approx. for 3 hours giving the eggplant a stir at 1 1/2 hour mark
When the eggplant is cooled remove from crock back into pillow caeses
Divide up the eggplant and place back into the same two pillow cases you used on first spin
At this point run all the jars thru dishwasher – time it so they are hot ready to jar the pickled eggplant after 2nd spin (give it about 1/2 hour-depending on timing of your own dishwasher)
Put all the tops to the canning jars in a pan of water, bring to a boil to sterilze as well
Place the eggplant strands back in the washer on “spin” cylce only again – NO WATER
Microwave fresh oregano in a microwave for 1 minute, crumble the oregano leaves off the stem and set aside
Add spun pickled eggplant back into the clean crock, add in 4 cups olive oil, 2 cups oil-cured black olives, 2 tbsps of caper and 2 tbsp of fresh microwaved oregano
Take hot jars out of the dishwasher and begin to fill with eggplant
Top off the pickled eggplant in the jars with a drizzle of olive oil keeping 1/2″ from the top
Wipe the top of the jars clean with a clean paper towel and seal with the hot tops you boiled on the stove – Be Careful Not To Burn yourself here
Approx 5 hours after putting the tops on the jars, gently push down on the middle circle to hear a small pop and complete the “seal” – NOTE: they may pop down completing that last seal all on their own
The pickled eggplant is done and will keep for months at room temp
I keep an opened jar in the fridge and bring to room temperature when ever I serve it…YUM!
The crusty almond flour coating on the eggplant helps to soak up the meaty bolognese goodness getting ooey, gooey and decadent. Like making you feel warm all over on a winter’s day. That’s how my friend, Christine, describe’s her Paleo Eggpalnt Lasagna that we made at her house last week! She hit it right on the money.
It was Christine’s cross-fit community that introcuced her to this fresh Paleo way of living. Even though It did take a year before fully committing she has been following it for a couple of years and really loves it. Paleo refers to foods eaten during the Paleolithic times so basically if the cave man didn’t eat it, neither can you. There are different levels of Paleo, but true Paleo doesn’t allow any dairy or legumes. Not sure if being a true Paleo is exactly for me since I live for cheese and cetainly wouldn’t give up beans. Although, there are certain aspects of Paleo I think are wonderful like the fresh way of eating, nothing manufactured or processed! Like Christine say’s, everything in moderation.
This Paleo Eggplant Lasagna is definitly a guilt free dish that shouldn’t taste this darn good! You don’t even miss the cheese here because every bite is luscious! I highly recommend that you to get on the ball and check out this fresh Paleo way of eating. You won’t regret it one bit and may find yourself with a big ole smile on your face!
Make tomato- basil sauceand leave simmering on low, ready for the meats to be sautéed and added
Sauté the pork, veal and lamb separately and drain the oil from each of the meats after each sautéing, this will take about 5 minutes each
As each meat is finished draining stir it into your tomato sauce
Peel and slice 2 lg eggplants approx. 1/8″-1/4″ thick
Whisk 5 eggs in a medium bowl
Add 3-4 cups almond flour in another bowl for dredging the eggplant
Cover cookie tray with foil and spray with coconut oil
Dip each eggplant slice into the egg, then dredge into the almond flour flipping a couple of times to get a good coating on there
Then begin to lay the coated eggplant slices on the cookie trays
No need to spray the tops of the slices
Pop them into the oven for 20 minutes, just until tender
Note: the tops of the eggplant slices will not turn golden when baked
Begin to layer the pre-baked eggplant slices in a 13″ x 9″, 12″ x 8″ approx. baking dish
Spray bottom of baking dish with coconut oil
Begin with a sauce layer, then eggplant slices, meat sauce, eggplant, meat sauce and so on until you reach the rim of the baking dish ending with a meat sauce layer completeing the Paleo Eggplant Lasagna
Change foil layers on cookie tray to clean foil
Place the Paleo Eggplant Lasagna onto the foiled tray and bake for approx. 35 minutes still on 350º until bubbly all over
As with a traditional lasagna you want to let it sit for 10-15 minutes before slicing after you take it out of the oven…Mangia, mangia!!