6 Japanese eggplants, or 2 large Italian eggplants
salt and freshly ground pepper
2 large garlic cloves, peeled
1/2 cup fresh Italian parsley leaves
1/2 cup fresh basil leaves, medium packed
1/4 cup tomato paste
3/4 cup water
2 tablespoons olive oil
Preheat the oven to 400 F. Halve the eggplants lengthwise and sprinkle with salt; set aside. Mince garlic in a food processor. Add parsley and basil, and mince together.
Pat eggplants dry. With sharp knife make 4 lengthwise slits in large eggplant or 2 in each Japanese eggplant; make cuts deep but not to bottom of eggplant so you donít pierce the skin. Insert some of herb mixture in each slit. Sprinkle eggplants with pepper. Put them in an oiled baking dish.
Mix tomato paste with all but 2 tablespoons of the water and spoon over eggplants. Sprinkle with oil. Add remaining water to pan.
Bake small eggplants uncovered for about 30 minutes or until tender. Cover large eggplants and bake 30 minutes, then uncover and bake 10 minutes or until tender. Serve hot or at room temperature.
Makes 4 side-dish servings
From Faye Levyís wonderful book International Vegetable Cookbook