Sunday, February 27, 2011

Paris here we come! Eggplant Gratin

We are headed to Paris this spring... ahhh.. Paris in springtime! I'm sooooo excited!! I will write a travel log again (as I have done for all of our trips) and IF you would like to receive the daily log, send me an e-mail. I will not post it on my blog or Facebook, so please communicate with me via e-mail. You can reach me at

Meanwhile, here is one of mine and Ina Garten's favorite recipes similiar to a dish she had at a restaurant in Paris, Le Coupe-Chou. I hope we get to eat there...maybe for lunch as I'm sure it is pricey!!! Think I should drop Ina's name???

Eggplant Gratin
2 large eggplant (about 1 1/2 lbs), unpeeled and sliced 1/2-inch thick
1/2 cup ricotta cheese (or cottage cheese)
2 eggs
1/2 cup half- and- half
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, divided
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup marinara sauce

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Helen's notes: To begin with, Ina fries her eggplant in olive oil. I prefer to brush mine with olive oil then place it on a baking sheet in a 400 degree oven for 15 minutes. Makes cleanup MUCH easier and saves a few calories!

Combine ricotta, eggs, half-and-half, 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper in a smal bowl.

Ina places a layer of eggplant slices in 4 individual gratin dishes; I place mine in a 9-x-13-inch baking dish. Sprinkle eggplant with Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper and 1/2 cup marinara sauce. Add a second layer eggplant, more salt and pepper, marinara sauce,then the ricotta mixture. Sprinkle more Parmesan cheese over the top. Place on a baking sheet and bake at 425 degrees for 10 minutes then lower the temp to 375 and bake for another 20 minutes or until the custard sets and the top is browned. Serve warm.

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