- 2 medium (approximately 2 pounds) purple Italian or Graffiti eggplant
- Kosher or sea salt
- Extra-virgin olive oil
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Finely grated zest of 2 lemons, reserving lemons for serving
- 8 ounces fresh ricotta, such as Narragansett Creamery
- 2 pints local cherry tomatoes, seeded, coarsely chopped
- ¼ cup (approximately 2 ounces) pitted Kalamata olives, coarsely chopped
- 1 teaspoon finely chopped oregano
Trim tops and slice eggplant lengthwise into .-inch-thick slices. Salt both sides of the eggplant and set in a colander to drain for 1 hour.
Preheat the grill to medium-high or prepare coals. Rinse the eggplant, pat dry, then brush slices lightly with olive oil using approximately 1 tablespoon. Season with salt and pepper.
Grill until eggplant is golden brown and softened, approximately 2 minutes per side.
Allow the eggplant to cool slightly while preparing the filling and sauce.
In a mixing bowl, stir the lemon zest into the ricotta cheese, then season with salt and pepper.
Spread 1 tablespoon of the ricotta cheese mixture over 1 side of the eggplant, then roll each slice tightly, starting from the narrower end. Continue with the remaining eggplant slices and set aside.
Heat 3 tablespoons olive oil in a large saute pan, add the tomatoes and olives, and cook until the tomatoes release their juices, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the eggplant rolls to the pan with the sauce, spooning sauce over each of the rolls until the cheese begins to melt slightly. Sprinkle the oregano over the eggplant rolls.
Divide eggplant rolls among 4 warm shallow bowls. Spoon remaining sauce over each and serve with a wedge of lemon (optional).
About this recipe
Total: $19.30 for 4 servings; $4.83 per serving.