Sunday, August 10, 2014

{Meat Free Monday : Eggplant Pizzas}

Last week I found some eggplant at a local green grocer for $3 a kg and couldn't pass it up. I didn't know what I was going to create with it at the time, but love a good challenge and am trying my best to eat as healthy as I can. This recipe turned out to be such a winner and I will definitely make it again!

Before you start, prep your eggplant by salting it to draw the bitterness out. I thought this was common knowledge until a conversation with someone recently and they couldn't figure out why they liked eggplant when cooked at a restaurant but not at home. Turns out they never knew to salt it first. For some good tips on this process, click on {this link} for more info from one of my favourite sites

Once you have prepped your eggplant your are ready. These are the ingredients I used:
1 Eggplant Cut width-wise into circles
Fresh Basil
Tomato Paste
Mushrooms or Lean cut Ham (depending if you want it to be fully vegetarian)
Parmesan Cheese
Salt and Pepper
Step 1:
Once Eggplant is prepped (as above)drizzle with a little evoo(extra-virgin olive oil) and either grill or bake until they start to golden. 

Step 2:
Spread with a little tomato paste and salt and pepper. I think you need the consistency of the paste rather than a sauce. If you use a pasta sauce type consistency, it may make the end product too watery and hard to pick up.
Add finely cut mushrooms, zucchini, lean ham, salami or whatever you like as your main topping. 

Step 3:
Add a fresh basil leaf or two and sprinkle with Parmesan. Its really worth splurging on fresh basil here, it makes it. Also, if you choose a stronger hard cheese (as opposed to a tasty style) you need less cheese (therefore calories) to achieve a nice taste. 

Step 4:Bake for about another 5 minutes in moderate oven, just to melt cheese really. If you like, tear a few extra basil leaves over before you serve. YUM!

I hope you enjoy as much as I did!
Lauren x   


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