Thursday, September 8, 2011

Tomato Roasted Eggplant with Turkey Meatballs

Here is another fun meal to serve to friends!  The presentation is great and it tastes just as good as anything you can find over in North Beach.  The turkey meatballs taste so good, because they have bubbly hot Parmesan cheese rolled into their mixture.  Yummmm.

The Meat
- 1 to 1 1/2 pounds of ground turkey meat
- Parmesan, salt, pepper, marjoram, basil, oregano, garlic powder, onion powder to taste
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/3 heirloom tomato, mostly crushed

The Veggies
- 1 large eggplant, sliced
- 1 summer squash, sliced
 - 6-10 Padron peppers, stems and seeds removed
- 1 heirloom tomato + the leftover tomato from the meat, mostly crushed
- 1 heirloom tomato, sliced
- salt, pepper, basil, oregano to taste
- 2 tablespoons of olive oil

- 2 cups spinach, wilted
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- salt to taste

Preheat your oven to 385 degrees. 

In a large baking dish, layer your eggplant, squash, and tomato, brushing each piece with the olive oil and then covering all of it evenly with the peppers, spices and crushed tomato.  Bake the veggies uncovered for 40 minutes.

In a mixing bowl, add the meat ingredients.  Take off your rings and get your hands in there.  Squish everything together until the spices and cheese look to be evenly mixed in with the ground meat.  Then go at it and roll some modest sized meatballs.  I ended up with around a dozen.  Bake them for 40 minutes on the rack above the eggplant and other veggies. They should be brown on the tops and the Parmesan should be hot and gooey when they are all done.

10 minutes before the baking dishes are set to finish, get a large saute pan and wilt the spinach over medium low heat.  Drain the spinach with a slotted spoon when moving it over to your serving dish.  When you pull the eggplant out of the oven, do the same, leaving the juices and crushed tomato mostly in the baking dish.

I served all of the food together on one huge serving platter. The baked eggplant and squash went on the bottom, then the spinach went on top of that, with extra Parmesan and some of the tomato sauce.  The meatballs were layered on the very top, with even more cheese and leftover tomato sauce.  Satisfying. 

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