Grilled Eggplant and Meatball Stacks

2 Aug

Grilled Eggplant Stack

I am on a roll this week*.  Forgetting things like it’s my job.  I am one of “those” people who menu plans for the weeks ahead and grocery shops accordingly.  I have absolutely no desire to spend more time than necessary in a grocery store, so I try to buy what I need for two weeks in one trip (while supplementing vegetables from the farmer’s market in between).

If you know me, you know that I am a list person.  No doubt about it.  I even write on my to-do lists that I need to write another list.  I am not that spontaneous (hence the two-week meal planning), so meal spontaneity is not on my radar.  At all.  So imagine my shock when I went to the grocery store with zucchini on my list and they were out.  Of zucchini!!  So crazy.  I almost had a panic attack because I was faced with the idea of changing my meal idea on the spot.  Like I said, totally not spontaneous.  But I apparently had a moment of clarity and saw the eggplants in the distance, calling my name (well, not really, that would be very freaky.  Like that episode of The Cosby Show when Cliff starts hallucinating that the contents of his fridge were talking to him.  Apparently he was having a bad PCP trip or something.).  So in a very un-Sarah moment, I quickly brainstormed and came up with this meal idea and thank goodness, they turned out to be delicious.

*Quick story: My aunt told me she was dancing at a wedding and her friend came up to her and said “You’re on a roll!”.  Thinking she was talking about her dancing, she said “Thanks, I love this song.” And her friend said “No, really, you are stepping on a kaiser roll.”  True story.

Grilled Eggplant and Meatball Stacks (makes 3 stacks)

1 medium eggplant

1 lb. ground beef

¼ cup Italian-seasoned breadcrumbs

¼ cup parmesan cheese

2 cloves of garlic, minced

4 basil leaves, torn

1 Tablespoon olive oil, for brushing

vegetable oil for pan-frying

fresh mozzarella, sliced

1 cup crushed tomatoes

garlic powder

Salt and pepper to taste

Cut eggplant into ½ inch rounds, brush with oil olive and season with garlic powder, salt and pepper

Grill over medium-high heat until eggplant starts to soften and grill marks form, flipping once (about 3 minutes on each side); remove from heat

Grilled Eggplant Stacks

To make the meatballs: Combine ground beef, breadcrumbs, parmesan cheese, garlic, basil, salt and pepper in a bowl and mix with your hands to combine

Form 6 meatballs and flatten in between your hands (so the meatballs will lay on the stacks easier)

Heat vegetable oil (1/2 inch deep) in a medium pan, place flattened meatballs in oil and cook for 4 minutes on each side (or until browned and a crust starts to form)

Meatballs

Stack as follows:  eggplant + meatball + mozzarella cheese + eggplant + meatball + mozzarella cheese + eggplant .  Top the stack with 1/3 cup of crushed tomatoes and finish with mozzarella.

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4 Responses to “Grilled Eggplant and Meatball Stacks”

  1. Georgianna Rickert Velardi August 2, 2013 at 9:32 am #

    I can see these in a miniature bite size form for holiday party appetizers. Yummilicious!

  2. Jacqueline Koril August 2, 2013 at 11:05 am #

    These sound amazing!!! Love the idea!!!

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