Mediterranean Eggplant Roulades

I am a huge eggplant fan! love it stuffed and baked, in eggplant parmesan and grilled with ginger-sesame marinade. But, don’t worry, even if you are not, you will love the taste of these roulades.  Tantalizing Mediterranean flavors … feta, Kalamata olives, sun-dried tomatoes, and shallots, all roll into these scrumptious eggplant roulades. Toasted pine nuts and balsamic glaze add the perfect accent! 

I prefer to use the larger eggplants because they provide plenty of room for lots of this savory filling and they are easier to roll up! Each large eggplant yields about five roulades, so multiply for the number of people you plan to serve. Two roulades make a perfect-sized side dish, but three or four would be ample for a main vegetarian meal. These are also excellent the next day reheated, so if you happen to make extra, all the better! They reheat beautifully for “must go” (leftover) night!

Be sure to sweat the eggplant slices before you cook them, so they don’t end up soggy. That is probably the biggest key to making eggplant appetizing and appealing. No one really wants soft, mushy eggplant! As soon as you slice the eggplant, lay the slices out on the wire baking rack. Salt each side and allow to sit for up to 30 minutes or so. Wipe up the liquid from both sides of the slices with a paper towel. Now you are ready to cook the slices before you fill and roll them!

Mediterranean Eggplant Roulades

Be sure to sweat the eggplant slices before you cook them, so they don’t end up soggy. That is probably the biggest key to making eggplant appetizing and appealing. No one really wants soft, mushy eggplant! As soon as you slice the eggplant, lay the slices out on the wire baking rack. Salt each side and allow to sit for up to 30 minutes or so. Wipe up the liquid from both sides of the slices with a paper towel. Now you are ready to cook the slices before you fill and roll them!

Ingredients

  • Eggplant:
  • 2 large eggplants ends removed and sliced into ¼-inch slices
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • Filling:
  • 2 large shallots finely chopped and sautéed until translucent
  • 6 large basil leaves snipped into small pieces
  • 1-2 cloves garlic minced
  • 8 halves sun-dried tomatoes chopped
  • 20 or so Kalamata olives, pitted and chopped
  • 10 ounces goat cheese softened to room temperature
  • 8 ounces crumbled feta cheese reserve a couple of tablespoons for on top of roulades, use the rest inside
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground white pepper
  • Dash of salt
  • Garnish:
  • 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar reduced by half in a saucepan over medium heat until syrupy
  • 1/2 cup pine nuts toasted

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350F. Grease a 9×13 casserole dish.
  • Cut both ends off the eggplant and slice lengthwise into 5 or so slices. Lay sliced on a wire cooling rack over a large baking tray.
  • Sprinkle both sides of slices with salt. Allow to sweat out liquid for about 30 minutes. When sweated, mop up the liquid with a paper towel and set back on the rack.
  • Meanwhile, place all filling ingredients into a bowl and mix well. When ready to roll, place 2-3 tablespoons of filling at the narrow end of the eggplant slices. Roll tightly and place, seam side down, in a greased casserole dish. Sprinkle extra feta over tops of roulades.
  • Bake at 350 F for approximately 30 minutes, or until cheese is beginning to brown and roulades are heated all the way through. Remove from oven and drizzle balsamic glaze over each roulade. Sprinkle toasted pine nuts on top.

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