EGGPLANT parmesan cheese RED PEPPER loaf

A superbly turned out rustic vegetable loaf born out of forgetfulness.
Therefore, I present you my accidental twist on a family Eggplant favourite.

It had been so long that this meal was enjoyed at our table.
I had actually forgotten that the original recipe had crushed Italian tomatoes in it.
For those wondering if this loaf presentation was from the original recipe...no...not quite.
It had never, ever been anywhere near this appearance.
I guess a new family dish has been born.

It did take me a few minutes to contemplate what had gone wrong!?!
As I was finishing up the cooking...I wondered...was it usually this dry?
No matter...the mix tasted amazing and I was ready to serve it.
Hubby had bought a crusty, artisanal French baguette...
and we were soon ready to dig in.

This is where the accident continued to be a blessing in disguise.
As I plated the mix...a slight mountain shape was holding its own.
I grabbed two spatulas and started working on what seemed like a loaf form.
It surprisingly and actually held without falling apart.
What an incredibly happy revelation this was.

Both Hubby and I gazed at it wondering...
who would be the first to dismantle this vegetable beauty.

This is how this pleasant accident of mine unfolded.

EGGPLANT parmesan cheese RED PEPPER loaf
serves 4 as entrée or 2 as main course

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(American / Metric measures)

. 3 Tbsps. (45ml) e.v. olive oil
. 3 Tbsps. (45ml) grape seed oil
. 1 large, sweet onion, diced small
. 1 large red bell pepper, diced small
. 1 large 'Black Beauty’ eggplant, cubed small
. 1/2 tsp. (2.5ml) each sea salt and garlic powder
. 1/2 tsp. (2.5ml) each of dried herbs:  basil, oregano, sage, tarragon
. 6 xLarge eggs
. 2 garlic cloves, crushed
. 1 cup (180g) grated Parmesan cheese*, packed
. 1/4 cup (40g) roasted almonds, crushed

* For this recipe, I used a milder and smooth tasting Parmesan made from Buffalo milk named:
Buffalo Parmesan from Sovrano:
Italian sovrano cheese is similar in appearance and texture to a good-quality parmesan cheese but quite a departure in flavour.  Instead of the pale golden rind that encases Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, sovrano, the Italian word for "sovereign," can easily be identified by its distinctive white rind imprinted with little crowns.  This cheese is made from a combination of buffalo and cow's milk. It has a slightly creamier texture and milder flavour than the more robust Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese.  Sovrano has a clean finish, with very little in the way of a lingering aftertaste. -- referance here

takes about 35-40 minutes

1. Once the eggplant has been sliced and chopped, place all the cubes in a colander and salt it by stages so that it's allowed to sweat out its water and bitterness.  Set aside.
Note: because the ‘Black Beauty’ variety has a thicker skin, I personally slice it partially on 4 sides.

2. Meanwhile, on MEDIUM heat, start stir-frying both onions and bell pepper until the point of caramelization. 

3. After about 20 minutes of cooking, add the sweated eggplant along with the salt and garlic powder to the onion mix.   Cook until this mix has reduced to about half its volume.  Now, add the dried herbs and stir.

4. In the meantime get the egg mixture ready by using a blender:  put the eggs, garlic, cheese and almonds.  Blend until smooth.

5. Pour the egg mixture over the vegetables and incorporate properly until the egg appears cooked and the moisture no longer is present.

When ready to plate...
just pile it up and shape it like a loaf.   
Serve with your favourite bread.

I really do wish that you'd give this one a try...
it was absolutely 'delizioso'.

Have you ever had such a surprising accidental turnout ready to do again?

Buon appetito...and flavourful wishes,

Comments or suggestions ... write me :o)
Claudia at: foodessa [at] gmail [dot] com

Go HERE for more SAVOURY creations.

Please take note on how I bake and cook...
Here’s a 101 of sorts to make sure that there are no disappointments when trying my creations.  
Also...just so you know...feel free to increase the salt and sweet factor since I'm not high on either of them ;o)

. Use DRY cup measurements for...you guessed it...all DRY ingredients.
Anything DRY gets measured by spooning the overfilled ingredient (never shake the cup) and then level off with a flat edged tool.  Exception...Brown sugar should be packed in and leveled.
. Use LIQUID cup measurements for...all LIQUIDS that cannot be leveled like for example butter, yogurt...etc.  Measure the liquids at eye level to avoid overdoing what the recipe truly needs.
OVENS are unfortunately not created equal.  Mine is so old that it has reached many degrees off it's norm.  It's really worth investing a few dollars to test yours with an appropriate oven thermometer.  You'd be surprised how many ovens I've heard about not being where they should have been.  Before you lose any more ingredients and much time preparing a new recipe...run to the store...you'll thank me later. 

Here are other tasty VEGETARIAN inspired dishes: