Shrimp and Eggplant Casserole

Makes 4-6 servings. Recipe by Teresa B. Day.

2 small-medium eggplants

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 onion, chopped

1 bell pepper, chopped

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 pound medium shrimp, peeled

¾ cup breadcrumbs, divided

1 egg, beaten

½ cup milk

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon black pepper

1 teaspoon Cajun seasoning blend

1. Heat oven to 375 F.

2. Peel and cut eggplant into cubes and place in a medium saucepan with enough water to cover eggplant. Bring to a boil and cook until tender, about 5 minutes.

3. Drain eggplant and mash with a potato masher.

4. In a deep skillet or Dutch oven, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Saute onion, bell pepper and garlic until onion is translucent and bell pepper is tender.

5. Add shrimp and cook until firm and pink, about 5 to 7 minutes.

6. Stir in mashed eggplant, ½ cup of the breadcrumbs, egg and milk.

7. Season with salt, pepper and Cajun seasoning blend.

8. Transfer mixture to a greased or buttered casserole dish and top with the remaining ¼ cup breadcrumbs.

9. Bake for 30 minutes. Serve hot.

Persimmon Bars

Makes 12 servings. Recipe is by Teresa Day.

3 persimmons (1 cup pulp)

1 egg, beaten

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

¾ cup light brown sugar

½ cup vegetable oil

1½ cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon nutmeg

1 teaspoon salt

1 cup powdered sugar

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Lightly grease a 10-inch-by-15-inch jelly roll pan.

2. In a small bowl, stir together persimmon pulp, egg, vanilla, brown sugar and vegetable oil.

3. In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt.

4. Fold dry mixture into persimmon mixture. Spread batter into prepared pan. Bake for 20 minutes.

5. To make the glaze, whisk together powdered sugar and lemon juice in a small bowl. Stir until sugar is dissolved. Remove bars from oven and pour over or drizzle glaze. Serve warm.

Teresa B. Day is a local food writer and author of the “I Eat BR” blog. Contact her at