Thursday, July 05, 2007

Ichiban Eggplant Pizza

What does one do with an ichiban eggplant? I asked myself this very question as I harvested our very first little eggplant. It was almost a sad harvest, as the eggplant had looked so cozy nestled in among the plant's leaves. All's well that ends well, though—this pizza was a delicious solution to the conundrum.

1 japanese eggplant, sliced into 1/8" rounds
1 red bell pepper, julienned
1 small head broccoli, cut into slivers
1 medium sweet onion, sliced
4-5 oz goat cheese
2 T pressed garlic
1 T red pepper flakes
olive oil

1 pizza crust

First, toss the eggplant and red pepper with olive oil, salt & pepper. Broil for about 3 minutes, turn pieces over, and broil another 3 minutes (more or less--you want them to be just slightly undercooked). Set aside.

Meanwhile, carmelize the onions in a little olive oil (sprinkle with salt & pepper); when they are browned, add the broccoli and cook for just a few minutes. Do not overcook the broccoli! Remove from pan and set aside.

Heat about 2 T of olive oil in the pan, and cook garlic & red pepper flakes for about 30 seconds. Remove from pan and set aside.

Pre-heat over to 350 degrees.

Now is the fun part, getting your hands into it! Smear the pizza crust with some olive oil. Then, layer on the eggplant, red bell pepper, broccoli, and onion. Dot with pieces of goat cheese. For the final step, sprinkle the garlic mixture over everything.

Bake for about 20 minutes, or when the crust becomes a nice golden brown.

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