Welcome to Legal Tender Farm

Welcome to Legal Tender Farm

Friday, July 25, 2014

Eggplant Focaccia

After trying two or three eggplant recipes in the past couple of weeks, I had about decided I don't really care for eggplant.  But, I made this recipe last night and it was actually quite good.  I got the recipe off of Martha Steward's website, but had to tweak it to make it gluten free.

1 medium eggplant (1/2 pound), cut into 1/4 inch thick slices
Coarse salt
One pkg. All-Purpose Chebe bread* (or your dough of choice)
2 T. fine cornmeal
4 T. olive oil
6-7 slices of swiss cheese (or 4-6 ounces grated swiss or Emmentaler cheese)
1 T. chopped oregano (if you have fresh oregano, use 2 T.)

In colander, toss eggplant with 1 1/2 teaspoons salt.  Let stand 30 minutes.  (The eggplant will ooze, so make sure you put something under it to catch the mess).  After 30 minutes, press slices between paper towels to dry and set aside.

Meanwhile, make the Chebe bread following the pkg. instructions.  Instead of using a full cup of cheese that the Chebe calls for, I used 1/2 cup peccorino roma, and I added one clove of garlic squeezed in a garlic press.  

Preheat oven to 400 degrees; place a rimless baking sheet, or inverted rimmed baking sheet, or pizza stone (which is what I used) in oven while it's preheating.  Roll out the Chebe dough (or other bread dough) to 1/2 inch thickness.  Sprinkle cornmeal on a lightweight wooden board or other rimless surface and top with dough.  You'll have to slide the focaccia off of this and onto your preheated pizza stone, hence the need for rimlessness.  The cornmeal keeps the dough from sticking to the surface and allows it to slide easily, so don't leave out this step.  Pierce the dough all over with a fork.

Brush dough with 2 T. olive oil and lay swiss cheese out to cover dough, leaving edges uncovered.  Layer on eggplant; brush with 2 T. olive oil; top with shredded cheese (I just cut mine into julienne-like strips) and oregano.  Let stand about 15 minutes, make sure the dough isn't sticking.  

Remove pizza stone from preheated oven and carefully slide focaccia onto it.  Return to oven and bake until bottom of focaccia is crispy and edges are golden, about 20 minutes.  Serve hot.

So tasty!  And very easy.  

I served it with fresh cucumbers and this tomato recipe (also adapted from a Martha Stewart recipe) using tomatoes and jalapeños from my garden.

Ginger, Jalapeño Tomatoes
(serves 2, easily doubled)

2 ripe tomatoes, cut into 1/2 inch wedges
1 small jalapeño or serrano chile, seeded and minced
1 T. peeled fresh ginger, minced
1 T. lemon juice (and zest from the lemon if you'd like)
1 T. olive oil
sea salt and ground pepper

In a small bowl, place tomatoes, jalapeño (if you don't like a lot of heat, only use as much of the pepper as you like), ginger and lemon zest if you're using it.  Mix together the lemon juice, oil, salt and pepper, then toss all ingredients together gently.  Serve at room temperature (because fresh tomatoes should never, ever, ever be refrigerated).

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