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
- 1½ servings classic Italian tomato sauce
- 150 g cooked yellow lentils
- 25 g chopped walnuts
- 1 kg eggplant (aubergine)
- 2 tablespoon olive oil
- 200 g vegan ricotta
- 100 g fresh spinach roughly chopped
- 20 fresh basil leaves approx
- ground black pepper to taste
- 9 tablespoon vegan parmesan
- 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
I can just imagine tucking into a dish of these with a lovely glass of chilled white wine while sitting in the sunshine... dreamy! Thanks again for joining us for Simple and in Season this month Nico! xxx
Sunshine? I think I remember that! Ha ha ha! xx
Well this is certainly the most clever use of eggplant I have ever seen. I have to admit that I am not normally a fan... but I'm wondering if it's because I haven't tried your salt trick. I appreciate you giving step by step instructions on this as maybe it can help me enjoy eggplant more. These are so pretty!!
Kirsty Hijacked By Twins
Delicious! This is something that I keep meaning to try, after reading this post I really do need to have a go! Thank you for sharing with #CookBlogShare x
Oh do - it's so easy, and really yummy! xx
Mary Ellen | VNutrition
These are sooooo tasty looking Nico! Such a cool idea to veganize eggplant rollups. I've only seen them stuffed with cheese before. I bet they'd make a wonderful starter too. 🙂
Thanks so much for linking up with us for Healthy Vegan Fridays! I’m Pinning and sharing!
Thanks, Mary Ellen! Same here - I'd only ever seen them filled with dairy cheese in restaurants - mostly mozzarella. I've made these with my own mozz a few times too, and they're rather good but I do prefer them with the ricotta. 🙂 xx
This is bookmarked my friend, and I hope to make this very soon (she types as she wipes away drool).
Ha ha ha, good to know I'm not the only one who drools over their keyboard, Lisa! xx
Yum, these look so amazing! I'm on the lookout for new summery vegan foods that everyone will love, and I can't wait to try these.
Hi Emme, thanks so much for stopping by and leaving a comment! I really hope these are a hit with your family and friends - do come back and let me know how you get on with them! xx
I've never made these but they'd definitely be something I'd love! They look so pretty too!
Thanks, Corina - they are pretty, aren't they? I hadn't really thought of that but you're right! I hope you try them - I'm sure you won't regret it! xx
And thank you so much for sharing these with #CookOnceEatTwice as well x
Hi Nico, have you ever made these in a dehydrator , I have some fermented tomato and tamatillo salsa that I could put over the top and would use my fermented cashew cheese. Will try it out and let you know how they turn out.
Hiya Christine! No, I've never used a dehydrator in my life but I'm intrigued to know how these would turn out. Your fermented tomato and tomatillo salsa sounds fab, and I love making fermented cashew cheese (I have four wheels in my fridge right now!). Do you have a blog? I'm just beginning my fermented journey, so am always on the lookout for instructions and ideas!
Looking forward to hearing how your roll-ups turn out. xx
These look absolutely delicious. I love aubergine so Im pinning and hope to come along and make them soon.
Excellent - I hope you like them when you get around to making them, Jacqui! xx
What a very clever way to use aubergines. I'm a recent aubergine convert, so I haven't got very adventurous with them yet. This sounds so delicious I feel I need to push the boat out and give this a try. I'm with you on washing up greasy frying pans - yuck!
Oh yes, greasy skillets.... ewww! In fact, I loathe washing up, full stop. It's just about bearable with rubber gloves but just the thought of putting my naked hands into a sink full of dirty dishes completely grosses me out! Fortunately we have a dishwasher.... and an arrangement - I cook, and amato mio does the dishes!
Aubergines are lovely! One of my favourite aubergine dishes is brinjal bhaji - so rich and creamy, and mildly-spiced. It's one of my go-to Indian takeaway yums when I'm in Britain! xx
Nico that looks SO delicious!
Thanks so much, Hanaan - I hope you try it! xx
(Are you Hanne's hubby, by any chance?!)
This recipe looks so easy to make but great results.I like the tip of grilling the aubergines instead of frying them.
I actually loathe cleaning up greasy skillets, and having the smell of frying lingering around in the apartment, so I much prefer grilling the aubergines. My only exception to this when I make parmigiana because the aubergines really need the oil to give them some body. I end up opening all the windows though... and piling on the jumpers! xx
Oh please - I'd love to know what you think of this! xx
Oh là là! This sounds lovely! I often grill aubergine slices and knowing the sweet taste that comes through, I can just imagine how wonderful this will taste. Aubergines should be harvested locally in a few weeks and I'll let you know if I try it out!