Monday, May 22, 2023

Baked Eggplant Parmesan Boats with Sausage


2 medium, 15 oz. each white eggplants, stems trimmed off and halved lengthwise
3 links, 8.4 oz. sweet Italian chicken sausage, casings removed
1/2 small onion, finely diced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 1/3 C. crushed tomatoes
5 basil leaves, chopped (plus more for garnish)
salt and pepper, to taste
1/2 C. shredded part skim mozzarella cheese
4 t. grated Pecorino Romano


  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F.
  2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil.
  3. Hollow out the flesh of the eggplant to create a boat using a melon baller or small knife, leaving a 1/2-inch of the flesh all around to create a shell. 
  4. Roughly chop the scooped out eggplant flesh.
  5. Drop the eggplant into the boiling water and cook 3 minutes (poking it with a spoon so they stay submerged). 
  6. Remove with a slotted spoon and set them on paper towels on the counter.
  7. Meanwhile, brown the sausage in a large skillet over medium-high heat, breaking the meat up while it cooks into smaller pieces. 
  8. Add the onions and garlic and cook on a medium-low heat for about 2-3 minutes, until onions are translucent. 
  9. Add 1 cup chopped eggplant and cook about 2-3 minutes. Add 1 cup crushed tomatoes, season with salt and pepper and cook 2 to 3 minutes. 
  10. Remove from heat and stir in fresh basil.
  11. Pour 1/3 cup of crushed tomatoes on the bottom of a 9 x 12 baking dish and place the eggplant boats on top. 
  12. Season the eggplant with salt and divide the sausage and sauce evenly among the 4 eggplant boats.
  13. Top each with 2 tablespoons of shredded mozzarella cheese and 1 teaspoon each of Pecorino Romano cheese. 
  14. Cover with foil and bake 30 minutes until cheese is melted and eggplant is cooked through.

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