I served this over a new red rice I saw at the fiesta and decided to try. It was a good rice. I think the overall presentation of the meal would have looked better on a lighter colored rice, but the flavor was great. I also must say that the pipian squash was good. Sadly I'm not sure when I'll see another one of those, but I have the left overs in the freezer.
And the verdict - my older boys loved this. I currently have a second batch in the oven - which makes me happy because it gave me something to do with the other veggies I had sitting there. On this one I put way less pepper in the tomato sauce on the bottom, and added Thyme and a dash of Italian seasoning and olive oil to the tomato sauce as well. (However I forgot the sprinkling of olive oil on the top.) I also liked the dish - other than I thought the tomato sauce was too peppery and not flavorful enough (hence the added ingredients in batch 2.) I was pleasantly surprised by the fact that I liked this. I have only tried eggplant once in eggplant lasagna or something (that I didn't make.) It was gross and I have been afraid to try it again. Would never have chose to buy one at the store, so it is probably a wonderful thing that I signed up for the CSA so I felt an obligation to try the veggies I had paid for. Now to find something to make with the HUGE chinese cabbage I got and the okra. Nothing like random veggies to make me branch out of my comfort zone. :)
Here is how I made it.
- 1 can crushed tomato
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic minces
- about 1-1 1/2 Tablespoons dehydrated onion
- 1 eggplant (although I only used about 1/2 of it.)
- 1 squash -I had a pale green variety called pipian
- 1 red bell pepper
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- salt and pepper
- Parmesan cheese
- Slice the squash, eggplant and red pepper very thin. (on a mandline or in a food processor would be easier. I used my food processor so I chopped my eggplant and squash down the middle - wasn't as cute as circles, but it was so much quicker and easier to cut. I also sliced mine in the thin side of my cutting disc - I would probably use the thicker side next time to get more veggies in the dish with less layers)
- Pour the crushed tomatoes on the bottom of a 2 quart casserole dish. Mix in garlic, onions, salt and pepper to taste (I used 1/4-1/2 teaspoon of salt and pepper -was definitely too much pepper)
- On top of the tomatoes, layer eggplant, squash, red pepper and repeat making a nice oval pattern around the dish.
- Sprinkle olive oil over the veggies. Sprinkle veggies with salt, pepper and thyme. Cover with foil and bake at 375 for 40-45 minutes. Uncover, sprinkle with Parmesan cheese, Bake an additional 10-15 minutes until cheese is melted and veggies are cooked through.