I'm a terrible cook, so you can be sure that any recipe I post here will be easy. This recipe is hard to mess up, you can add or subtract any ingredients you like, and it's healthy and cheap. It's also pretty enough to serve to guests, and can be made vegetarian without really losing flavor or substance. Win-win for the aubergine!
2 medium eggplantsPreheat oven to 350 degrees F.
olive oil, for drizzling and cooking
salt and pepper
8-12 ounces (about two or three large links) turkey sausage (may be omitted)
8 ounces white or portabello mushrooms, chopped
1/2 large onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon dried oregano
black pepper to taste
1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
1/4 cup bread crumbs
2 cups tomato sauce (recipe follows, or use canned)
Wash and dry eggplants, and slice in half lengthwise. Use a paring knife to remove most of the flesh, leaving about 1/4" thickness all around; reserve flesh. Drizzle hollowed-out shells with olive oil, salt, and pepper, and place skin-side-up on a rimmed baking sheet lined with aluminum foil. Bake for 15 minutes in the preheated oven.
Meanwhile, squeeze sausage out of the casings and cook in a medium skillet over medium heat until done. Set aside.
Roughly chop the eggplant flesh.
Add 1 tablespoon olive oil to a very large pan, and cook mushrooms until brown. When mushrooms are brown, add eggplant, onion, and garlic to the pan. Cook until onions are lightly browned. Remove from heat, and stir in cooked sausage.
Remove eggplant shells from oven, turn skin-side-down, and fill shells with eggplant-sausage mixture. Cover with tomato sauce. Sprinkle on breadcrumbs and parmesan cheese.
Bake eggplants in preheated oven for 25 minutes.
Quick tomato sauce
1 very large can (about 32 ounces) whole peeled tomatoesCrush whole tomatoes with your hands, and place them in a large skillet with a little olive oil. Add garlic, salt, pepper, and spices. Cook tomatoes over medium heat until they reduce and thicken a little, 5-10 minutes.
1 clove garlic, chopped
basil, thyme, or whatever spices you have on hand, to taste
1 small can (8-12 ounces) tomato paste
Add tomato paste. Cook, stirring often, for 10 more minutes. Good for pizza or stuffed eggplants.