Thursday, June 28, 2007

Grilled Eggplant Stack

This is a lovely summer meal that is especially great for this time of the year...squash season. When I went to the farmers market last week, they seemed to be practically drowning in squashes!! I availed myself of a few of them, but I'm sure my purchase was just a drop in the ocean of squashes that were there.

You could serve this dish as a cute appetizer, but we had it as a main, served with salad. Either way, its healthy and delicious. I used baby eggplant, but it would better if you could find the larger kind. This recipe again has goat's cheese, which seems to be creeping into almost every meal I make lately....but its so yummy, I don't see an end to it soon :). If you like grilled vegetables, then I suggest making an extra batch whilst you are doing this recipe, because they are super tasty fresh off the grill and you could use them later in sandwich's or just on their own. Lovely and sweet.

The recipe is from this month's issue of Cooking Light and only has 117 calories per serve. Yum!!

Grilled Eggplant Stack
(makes 4 stacks)

1 (1 pound) eggplant, cut crosswise into 1/2" thick slices
3/4 tsp salt, divided
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup dry red wine
1 tbs brown sugar
1 small zucchini
1 small yellow squash
1 large red bell pepper, quartered lengthwise and seeded
1 tsp olive oil
1/4 tsp fresh black pepper
1/4 cup (2oz) goat's cheese
1 tbs fresh chopped basil
1 tsp fresh chopped oregano

1. Place eggplant slices in a colander and sprinkle evenly with 1/2 tsp salt. Toss well and let stand for 10 minutes. Rinse thoroughly and dry with a paper towel.

2. Combine vinegar, wine and sugar in a small saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil, then simmer until reduced to 1/4 cup (about 8 minutes).

3. Prepare the grill. Trim ends from the zucchini and yellow squash. Slice each lengthwise into 4, 1/4" thick slices. Flatten the pepper with your hand. Brush eggplant, zucchini, squash and pepper with oil and sprinkle with remaining salt and pepper. Place pepper pieces skin down, eggplant, zucchini and squash on the grill. Grill 8 minutes or until tender, turning once.

4. Combine cheese and herbs. To assemble the stack, place a slice of eggplant on a plate. Top with one fourth the cheese mixture. Lay a strip of zucchini and yellow squash side by side. Drizzle with 1 1/2 tsp of balsamic reduction. Top with a slice of pepper and another slice of eggplant and drizzle another 1 1/2 tsp of balsamic reduction. Repeat procedure three more times with remaining vegetable slices and cheese, let stand for 5 minutes and then serve.

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