Eggplant Stack

Posted on: Wednesday, October 26, 2011

The eggplant is a vegetable famous for its glossy, deep purple beauty. With its pleasantly spongy texture and mild flavor, it complements any ingredient. Looking at the tear-dropped gem, we brainstormed whether to take an Italian route incorporating mozzarella and basil, an Indian route with curry and raisins, or a Thai route with spicy basil and coconut milk, to name a few. We opted for a Greek inspired stack. The salty, briny feta paired perfectly with the sweet eggplant. To add some pop in taste and color, we layered sautéed spinach and tomato sauce.

When we prepare food, we almost always have the same vision. This time around, we had slightly different approaches, so decided to each make our own layered stack. Although the eggplant towers looked almost identical, they were slightly different.
Can you guess whose is whose?

Eggplant, Spinach, Tomato and Feta Stack

1 eggplant, sliced in 1/2inch circles
2 T balsamic vinegar
3 c fresh baby spinach
1 clove minced garlic
1/8 t red pepper flakes
2 c heated tomato sauce (use your favorite!)
4 oz crumbled feta cheese
salt and pepper throughout

Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. In a bowl, mix the eggplant circles with 1 T EVOO, balsamic vinegar, and salt and pepper. Spread the circles on an oiled baking sheet and cook for 5 minutes on each side. While the eggplant is cooking, heat the remaining EVOO in a skillet on medium-high heat. Sautee the minced garlic and red pepper flakes for one minute. Add the spinach and cook for 3-5 more minutes until wilted.

To assemble the stack, follow these steps:

1. Pool of tomato sauce
2. Roasted eggplant circle
3. Spoonful of sautéed spinach
4. Spoonful of crumbled feta
5. Spoonful of tomato sauce 

Repeat this process three times. Makes 3 stacks.

This is great as a starter or a vegetarian main dish served with lots of bread!


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