Eggplant Tian Gratin Thingy
Sorry for the bad title, but it’s somewhere halfway in between a tian and a gratin. It’s darn tasty, that’s for sure though. And, it’s a good way to get your man to eat eggplant!
For this, you’ll need:
- 1 medium eggplant, peeled, prepared (see below), and sliced about ¼” thick
- 2 tomatoes, just larger than egg-size, also sliced to about ¼” thick
- 1 medium onion, sliced into thinner rings
- olive oil
- 1 cup heavy cream
- ½ cup shredded mozzarella
I used a tall-sided ceramic pie baker (plus it’s orange with wavy edges to make this dish look pretty, thanks Pier 1!). Don’t use a glass pan! When you add the cold cream, the pan will shatter!
To prepare eggplant, slice into ¼” discs. On a jelly roll pan, put a double layer of paper towels down, a single layer of eggplant, then sprinkle with about a teaspoon of salt for the entire pan. Top with another double layer of paper towels; you can do another layer of eggplant, if necessary. Place something flat and heavy across the pan– it could be a sheet pan, or a large skillet– then put other heavy things in the pan– a box of Kosher salt, a jar of salsa, just heavy things! Let the eggplant sit for about 20-30 minutes, then put them into the pan. This pulls out all the bitterness and makes the darn things edible!
Preheat oven to 250°F.
Brush the bottom of the pan with olive oil, then spiral-stack a layer of eggplant, tomatoes, and onions. Drizzle with olive oil and a generous sprinkling of pepper and herbs (no salt really necessary, the eggplants are salty from their preparation!) Do a second layering of vegetables, then spices.
Roast in the oven for about an hour.
Remove the pan from the oven; crank the oven up to 375. Pour the cream over, then sprinkle the cheese on top. Bake until bubbly, about 15-20 minutes.