I continue to be awed by the beauty of vegetables: their varying color, shape, and texture. These Graffiti Eggplant, grown by Riverdog Farms, are the heart of today’s cooking adventure. I do wish I could take credit for cultivating these beauties myself. (Maybe next year!) At least the oregano is from our backyard, and my mom grew the garlic in Bolinas.
What flavors work with eggplant? How do I keep their inherent beauty as intact as possible? These are the questions I ask myself as a recipe starts to form in my mind.
- 6 small eggplant (or 2 large ones)
- 1 cup cooked rice
- 6 cloves garlic
- ½ cup feta
- 1 tablespoon fresh oregano
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- ½ cup Picholine olives (many olives work in this recipe, but Picholines are my favorite)
Cook your rice. I used brown rice because it is much healthier and I like the nutty flavor it adds to this dish.
Pit and chop olives. Slice garlic into slivers. Cut eggplant in half and scoop out about half of the innards. Chop the eggplant pulp and mix in a bowl with olives, oregano, slivered garlic, and cooked rice. Crumble in feta to mix. Season with salt and fresh ground pepper.
Place eggplant in a lightly greased ceramic baking dish. Fill each half with stuffing. Drizzle oil over the tops. Lightly cover and bake for about an hour. Check for doneness after 45 minutes and add a little extra feta for the last few minutes of cooking.
For last night's supper, we ate these eggplant with a salad of spinach, pancetta, and toasted walnuts.