Eggplant is often over looked, it actually has many uses in a variety of cooking styles. Check it out in middle eastern and Italian recipes if you are feeling exotic!
My 3 year old son LOVES his eggplant. I usually just do "eggplant pancakes" for him (aka Eggplant Parmigiana) or Ratatouille. Since I just posted Ratatouille the other night, I'll put up two more quick recipes for eggplant usage. These are very quick and simple, but very tasty and satisfying.
Eggplant Parmigiana (SUPER EASY)
1 eggplant, peeled and sliced
2 eggs, beaten
1/2-1 cup Italian bread crumbs
Pasta of choice, cooked
Sauce of choice (I love Vodka sauce with it)
Mozzarella Cheese, shredded
Simple enough: Dip eggplant in egg, then bread crumbs, brown on both side in EVOO over medium heat. (In a skillet)
Preheat oven to 350
Layer pasta, eggplant patties, sauce, and cheese in baking pan.
Cook for 15-20 minutes or until cheese is nicely melted.
Now you could make it a little more UMPH-y by making the sauce from scratch, but I usually make this for a quick dinner, so I happily reach for the jar of sauce. :)
Roasted Eggplant with Pesto over Tortellini
1 eggplant peeled and sliced into strips
2-3 shallots peeled and sliced into rings
5-6 tablespoons of sun-dried tomato pesto*(see below)
Fresh tortellini (I don't care for the dry kind.)
Preheat oven to 425
Arrange eggplant and shallots on greased cookie tray, sprinkle with EVOO
Roast until shallots are glassy and eggplant is tender, sometimes I'll put the eggplant in alone, roast for a few minutes and then add the shallots.
In the meantime, cook tortellini according to package directions.
Toss tortellinis with eggplant, shallots, and pesto until everything is nicely blended.
*Basically, you puree sun-dried tomatoes, garlic, olive oil, and pine nuts together. You can also purchase it already to go in a jar.