Shrimp Stuffed Eggplant
Serves 4. Recipe is from Corinne Cook. The recipe calls for just shrimp, but you can add ½ pound crabmeat if you like.
2 medium eggplants
2 tablespoons butter or oil for sautéing shrimp
1½ pounds shrimp, peeled and deveined
Salt, black pepper and cayenne pepper to taste
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 onion, chopped
1 bell pepper, chopped
2 ribs celery, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
4 slices day-old bread
1 tablespoon butter
2 eggs, lightly beaten
¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
¼ cup Parmesan cheese for topping
1. Preheat oven to 400 F.
2. Cut whole eggplants in half lengthwise. Do not peel. Drop the halves in a large pot of boiling water and cook for 5 minutes. Drain on wire rack.
3. In skillet, melt 2 tablespoons butter, add shrimp and season with salt, black pepper and a pinch of cayenne. Quickly sauté shrimp only until they are all pink. Remove from heat and set aside; do not drain.
4. Using a paring knife or grapefruit cutter, remove the pulp from the bulbous part of the eggplant and only partly up the stem end. Leave ¼-inch thick shell to hold seafood stuffing. Place the hollowed shell in a greased baking dish.
5. Chop the eggplant that you removed from the centers into small pieces and set aside.
6. In non-stick skillet, add 3 tablespoons vegetable oil and sauté onion, bell pepper, celery and garlic until vegetables are softened. Add the chopped eggplant pulp and cook for 15 minutes or until vegetables are soft and eggplant is cooked through.
7. Wet the bread slices under running water and gently squeeze out most of the water.
8. Add the bread, 1 tablespoon butter and salt, black pepper and cayenne pepper to the eggplant mixture. Stir until well mixed. Taste for seasoning and add more if necessary.
9. Remove from heat and cool slightly then add the lightly beaten eggs. Blend well, Add the cooked shrimp and shrimp juices (and the crabmeat if you’re using it). If mixture is too thin, add a little bread or breadcrumbs.
10. Spoon stuffing into eggplant shells. Pile it high if necessary.
11. In separate bowl, combine parsley and Parmesan cheese; mix and sprinkle over the top of each eggplant.
12. Bake 20-25 minutes or until heated through and bubbly.