Eggplant Pizzettes

2 Asian eggplants (or 1 small Italian eggplant)
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper
1 pound pizza dough
3/4 cup pizza or pasta sauce
32 leaves fresh basil or arugula
2-1/4 cups shredded provolone or mozzarella cheese

Cut eggplants crosswise into 1/4-inch thick rounds. (If using Italian eggplant, cut rounds into quarters.) Place on greased rimmed baking sheets. Brush with oil; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast in 400ºF oven, turning once, until tender, about 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, on floured surface, roll dough into log; cut into 32 pieces. Cover with plastic wrap; let stand for 10 minutes to relax dough. Roll out each piece to 3-inch circle about 1/8-inch thick.

Place circles, 1 inch apart, on 2 greased rimless baking sheets. Spread 1 teaspoon of the pizza sauce right to edge of each circle. Top each with 2 eggplant rounds, 1 basil leaf and 1 tablespoon of the cheese. (Make-ahead: Cover with plastic wrap; refrigerate for up to 4 hours.)

Bake in top and bottom thirds of 500ºF oven, switching and rotating pans halfway through, until crusts are golden on bottom and cheese is melted, about 10 minutes.



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