This post was written at the cottage including the photos taken on my lowly iPhone 3GS! Hopefully Apple’s September announcement will be about the iPhone 5, for which I am anxiously awaiting the release.
Do you have to create a meal plan for the weekends at the cottage? I do, I have to. We have no decent stores anywhere near our cottage. I once forgot cream cheese and had to settle for a cream cheese and chive dip from a 7-11. It was pathetic. I have to have everything figured out because to forget an ingredient would be devastating (well, for me anyway).
I had a menu plan for this past weekend which was our Civic Holiday long weekend (each first Monday of August is the Simoe Day, in honor of our first Lieutenant Governor of Upper Canada, John Graves Simcoe) and it was good and it was well thought out. I had shopping lists and everything. And then I read a couple of posts which made me switch my plan. Yes, you read that correctly. I revised the meal plan to include these wonderful recipes that inspired me.
My first deviation was because of Karen at Backroad Journal Posted a healthier version of Eggplant Parmesan that I just couldn’t resist; plus it gave me an opportunity to use my adorable cast iron individual square frying pans! It was incredibly delicious!
(only slightly modified from Karen’s lovely recipe)
Serves 4-6 for lunch as a main
- 4 baby eggplants, sliced 1 cm (0.5″)
- 1/2 lemon
- 2-3 tbsp EVOO
- 4 garlic cloves, finely minced
- salt to taste
- 300-400 mL basic homemade tomato sauce, or your favorite marinara sauce
- a handful of chopped fresh basil
- 1 cup ricotta
- 1 clove garlic, finely minced
- 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 large ball fresh mozzarella, sliced
- 20 cm (8″) square pan plus individual serving dishes
- Non-stick spray
- After slicing the eggplant, rub each side with lemon juice to prevent ‘rusting’.
- Mix the olive oil with the garlic and brush each side if the eggplant slices liberally. Grill on a hot grill until slices are soft. Sprinkle with salt to taste. Set aside (may be made in advance).
- Mix the ricotta with one clove finely minced garlic, salt to taste.
- In an oven proof 20 cm (8″) pan, line with parchment and spray with non-stick spray. Line the bottom with one layer of eggplant, top with half of the ricotta. Dot with roughly torn fresh basil. Drizzle with the tomato sauce, add another layer of eggplant. Top with the remaining ricotta, roughly torn fresh basil and the remainder of the tomato sauce.
- Add the sliced fresh mozzarella evenly on top. Bake on indirect heat on the BBQ until fully warmed through and mozzarella has melted. Sprinkle with freshly grated Parmesan and broil until bubbly.
- Serve in individual serving dishes garnished with fresh basil and green onions.