Imam Bayildi (version X)

Stuffed Eggplant

(1 vote)

4-6 Japanese eggplants, about 6 inches long
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 medium onions, thinly sliced
4-6 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 large tomatoes, chopped
1/4 cup chopped parsley
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons lemon juice

Remove the stems from the eggplants and peel 1/2-inch strips at intervals, leaving stripes of skin in between. Cut a deep slit in one side of each eggplant, leaving the ends and the opposite sides intact. Sprinkle generously with salt and allow to sit for 30 to 45 minutes. Rinse thoroughly, squeeze out the moisture, and blot dry with paper towels. Meanwhile, heat half the oil in a saute pan over moderate heat and saute the onions until tender but not brown, about 10 minutes. Add the garlic and cook 2 minutes. Transfer the onion mixture to a mixing bowl with a slotted spoon and stir in the tomatoes, parsley, salt, and pepper. Add the remaining oil to the sauté pan and fry the eggplants over high heat until lightly browned on all sides but still firm, about 5 minutes.

Transfer to a baking dish and arrange the eggplants slit side up. Spoon the onion mixture into the slits, forcing in as much as possible, and spoon the remainder over the tops of the eggplants. Add the water to the dish and bake covered in a preheated 375F (oven until the eggplants are very tender, 45 minutes to 1 hour. Remove from the oven, uncover, and sprinkle with the lemon juice. Serve at room temperature.

Serves 4 to 6.

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