Bored with parmigiana di melanzane? (Strange as it seems, it could happen.) Looking for something else to make with aubergines? You won't go wrong with my vegan eggplant roll-ups - a delicious baked combination of creamy aubergine, spinach, tomato, and tangy vegan ricotta.
Do I need to fry the eggplants?
Traditionally, the aubergine slices are coated with flour, then fried until just soft; however, if like me, you are conscious about your weight, or you simply don't wish to fry them, my lighter method tastes just as good.
Plus, there's no icky, greasy frying pan to wash up. Huzzah!
Do I need to salt the eggplants?
Regarding salting aubergines; smaller, younger ones don't need to be salted, and the varieties grown in Europe these days have been bred to have no bitterness; however, if you're in any doubt, it's best to play it safe. Bitter aubergines can completely ruin a dish. Prep the aubergines 30 minutes ahead of making your recipe, and you'll be fine.
Salting is easy; simply slice the aubergine, place a colander on a plate (or in the sink), put in a layer of aubergine slices, sprinkle over some coarse salt, add another layer, sprinkle over some salt, and so on. Place a side plate on top of the slices, and lightly weigh it down. Leave to 'sweat' for 30 minutes, then rinse well, and dry each slice with a clean tea towel or some kitchen roll.
For even more healthy nomminess, I add some cooked lentils and a few chopped walnuts. Served with a crisp green salad, this makes a lovely light lunch or supper.
(Also excellent with oven-baked wedges... shhhhh!)
You could even have these eggplant roll-ups on their own as a starter.
Easy Vegan Eggplant Roll-Ups
- healthy comfort food
- full of fibre and protein
- packed with vitamins
- completely delicious
I'm sure you're going to love these just as much as we do. Buon appetito!
Have you ever made eggplant roll-ups?
Easy Vegan Eggplant Roll-Ups
- Pre-heat your oven to 185°C/365°F.
- Prepare the aubergine by cutting off the stalks, and cut lengthwise into approximately 1cm thick slices. (The aubergines, that is, not the stalks!)
- Mix the lentils and walnuts into the tomato sauce, and then place 2-3 ladlefuls on the bottom of a lasagne dish.
- Heat your grill, and brush with a little oil. Arrange the aubergine slices on the grill plate, and brush each one with a little more oil. Close the top, and cook for a few minutes, until the slices are lightly-browned, and softened enough to work with. Unless you have a large grill, you'll probably need to do this in two batches.
- Carefully remove the aubergines slices from the grill, and place onto a large chopping board or clean work surface.
- Spread each slice with some of the ricotta, then a tablespoon of the tomato sauce mixture. Add some chopped spinach, some torn basil, and a few grinds of black pepper.
- Roll up each slice, and place into the oven dish.
- Loosely cover with tin foil, and bake in a hot oven for 40-45 minutes, until the aubergines are cooked through.
- Warm the tomato sauce through while the aubergines are cooking.
- Once cooked, remove from the oven, take off the foil, spoon over some more tomato sauce, and finish with the vegan parmesan and a few grinds of black pepper.
- Serve immediately. (It doesn't really keep well, and it can't be frozen.)
- 1 cup = US cup = 240 ml
- 1 tablespoon = US/UK = 15 ml
- 1 fl oz = US = 30 ml