This eggplant rollatini recipe is not fried and not coated in breadcrumbs. Gasp! Instead it's baked, and it's an easy take on a classic dish. Eggplant rollatini is great right from the oven or heated up as an easy weeknight leftover!
There's no better way to feel sneaky than to create something that looks fancy, but is actually very easy. Eggplant rollatini definitely fits in that category for me!
But first, a few tips. Don't overfill the eggplant rolls, but if you do there's no harm done. You can just scoop that extra ricotta mixture out of the sauce with a spoon once it bakes! Also don't feel the need to pick the basil leafs off of the stem. Just throw the entire stem in with all of the leaves. Also eggplant is incredible, but you need to salt it. When you salt the eggplant and let it sit the salt soaks into the spongey eggplant and excess water is drawn out. This makes for one delicious eggplant.
The recipe is below, enjoy!
1 large eggplant
3 tablespoons of olive oil
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 28 oz. can of crushed San Marzano tomatoes
1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes
7 fresh basil leaves
15 oz. ricotta cheese
3 tablespoons shredded parmesan cheese, plus more for baking
1/4 tsp dried oregano
Cut off the ends of the eggplant, then cut the eggplant length-wise into sheets. You’ll want the sliced to be thin enough so they’ll roll. If you try to roll and the eggplant snaps, it's too thick! Lay the slices out on a few sheets of paper towels and sprinkle the eggplant liberally with salt. Set aside for 10-20 minutes.
Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
Pat the eggplant dry (it should be wet on the surface!), and rub the eggplant with olive oil. Place the eggplant in a single layer on a paper-lined baking sheet.
Bake the eggplant in the oven for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven, and cool.
To make the sauce, heat the olive oil on medium heat in an oven-proof sauté pan. Add the garlic and stir until fragrant. Add the crushed tomatoes stirring them into the garlic oil. Stir in the red pepper flake and basil, letting the sauce bubble and get hot.
Meanwhile prepare the ricotta filling by combining the ricotta cheese, egg, shredded parmesan cheese and dried oregano.
Fill up the San Marzano tomato can a third of way with water and add it to the sauce. This will help if the sauce is getting too thick.
Create each eggplant roll by adding a scoop of the ricotta filing into the middle of the pieces of eggplant. Gently roll each eggplant slice up and place them all seam-side down into the pan of sauce. Top each of the rolls with more mozzarella cheese until covered.
Bake the eggplant rollatini for another 10 minutes until the cheese melts. Serve warm!