August 11, 2011

Eggplant Frittata

Sometime last year I bought an eggplant and was so excited to try what I just knew was going to be my new favorite meat-free meal: eggplant parmesan. Fail.  It was probably a combination of things I did wrong, but I ended up throwing away the majority of it and proclaiming myself anti-eggplant.

But they're so darn pretty. And they are full of nutritious good stuff and when they are on sale they are a great option for vegetarian dishes. And most importantly, I believe in second chances! So when my local grocery store had them on sale of 99 cents per pound last week I decided to try again.  I searched Pinterest and found this recipe for eggplant frittata on Chico's Kitchen and I went with it.  Here's the original recipe posted by Cherine...

Eggplant Frittata
  • 8 eggs
  • 1.5 pounds eggplant, peeled every other strip and cubed (I used half this much and thought it was still a lot of eggplant.  The full amount would have been overkill for me.)
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 6 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2 oz. Gruyere cheese, grated (my local grocery store had this in the deli section. You know over where the hummus and prepared pasta/potato salad is. The cost for the amount used in the recipe was about $1.40.)
  • 1 tablespoon chopped parsley (I used dried)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil

1. Sprinkle chopped eggplant with salt and let sit in a colander for thirty minutes.  Rinse well and dry with a paper towel.

2. Heat olive oil in skillet and saute onions.  When they start to get translucent, add the eggplant and garlic. Cook on medium low heat, stirring often, until golden brown and soft.

3. In a bowl whisk together the eggs, cheese, and salt and pepper.

4. Pour egg mixture into skillet and move around the eggplant a bit so the eggs can cover the bottom of the skillet. Cook on low heat, covered, until eggs are set and cooked through.  This took way longer than I thought it would... probably because I kept uncovering it...

5. Slice it up (4-6 servings depending on how hungry you are) and sprinkle with parsley.

My thoughts.... this whole anti-eggplant thing is all in my head, I'm sure of it. This fritatta has a great flavor, which I think has a lot to do with the onions and the Gruyere cheese. Props to Cherine for putting the whole thing together. But I kept finding myself pretending the eggplant chunks were mushrooms, and that made it better for me.  In the end I liked it (even more so today as I eat leftovers for lunch). But will I make it again?  Probably not.  But I do hope YOU will try it and if you like eggplant, I think you'll love this.

By the way, this recipe felt very fancy in a simple-yet-fancy French cuisine kind of way, so much so that I even wore my new apron while I made it. I had to balance that out somehow... by serving it with simple steamed broccoli.  And store-brand boxed macaroni and cheese. I'm classy like that.

So do you like eggplant? How have you used it? Is there anything you've given a second chance but just decided you didn't care for it?

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