Even eggplant haters will love eggplant rollatini. I build flavour in the breaded coating and in the filling and carnivorous people devour these with gusto. The original recipe calls for spooning tomato sauce over the rollatini before baking, but I prefer mine on the side. Soggy eggplant just doesn’t do it for me. That’s probably why there are eggplant haters in the first place. I typically make extra filling for other uses, such as pizza or lasagna, and I always make extra and freeze them for lunches. They’re even better the next day. -bvox
Baked Eggplant Rollatini
Adapted from Epicurious
- 18 1/4 to 1/3-inch-thick lengthwise eggplant slices (from about 3 medium)
- All purpose flour, seasoned with salt and pepper
- 4 large eggs, slightly beaten and seasoned with a couple dashes of hot sauce (I used Siracha)
- 3 cups panko breadcrumbs, seasoned with salt, pepper and 1 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
- 3 shallots, finely diced
- 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 cups fresh spinach, chopped
- 2 2/3 cups grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
- 3 cups (packed) coarsely grated whole-milk mozzarella cheese
- 1 1/2 cups whole-milk ricotta cheese
- 3/4 cup chopped fresh basil leaves
- salt and pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 350°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and spray one 13x9x2-inch baking dish with nonstick spray. Place seasoned flour in a wide shallow bowl, seasoned eggs in second bowl, and seasoned breadcrumbs in another. Coat each each eggplant slice with the flour mixture, then the egg mixture, and finally the breadcrumb mixture. Arrange eggplant slices in single layer on prepared sheets. Bake eggplant until coating is golden, turning after 15 minutes, about 30 minutes total. Cool on sheets.
Sauté shallots, spinach and garlic with 2 tablespoons of olive oil for a few minutes until soft. Let cool. Mix cooked spinach with mozzarella cheese, ricotta cheese, basil, and 1 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese in medium bowl. Season filling with salt and pepper. Divide filling among eggplant slices (about 3 tablespoons per slice); spread evenly. Starting at 1 short end, roll up eggplant slices, enclosing filling. Arrange rolls, seam side down, in prepared baking dish. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and chill.)
Preheat oven to 350°F. Sprinkle with remaining Parmigiano-Reggiano and some extra mozzarella cheese. Bake uncovered until rollatini are heated through and mozzarella cheese melts, about 30 minutes.
Serve with a delicious tomato sauce and pasta of your choice.