Join Me in My Addiction!

Thank you for visiting my blog...and for allowing me to share with you my addiction. I love to collect recipes. I love to read cookbooks. I have been collecting recipes for as long as I can remember, and on any given day there are one or two (or more!) cookbooks residing on my nightstand!

This blog is chronicling my adventure as I fulfill my resolution of trying (at least) one new recipe each week. I hope that you enjoy!

I invite you to join me in my journey, simply by clicking the "Join this Site" link below. And please feel free to comment on any of the recipes, and pin away. Thanks, I look forward to sharing with you!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Remarkable Ratatouille - Slow Cooker Thursday

For this week's Slow Cooker Thursday, I decided trying someting TOTALLY new for us.  Ratatouille.  I had no idea what to expect...I haven't even seen the movie (we own it...but I tend to sneak away and do laundry or other chores when our son watches movies).  I've never even had eggplant before.  None of us have in our little family.  But, I saw the recipe in my Canada's Best Slow Cooker Recipes cookbook, tagged it (I should have shares at 3M/Post-It), and figured we should try it (since we did grow eggplant in our garden this year, and there was one beautiful one waiting for us to use).

PS - don't forget about the Slow Cooker Link Party running now! Link up at the end of this post :-)

Here is the recipe (Source: Canada's Best Slow Cooker Recipes)

3 small eggplants, cut into 1-inch cubes
1 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon butter or margarine
1 onion, thinkly sliced and separated into rings
250 g of mushrooms, sliced
1 can (796 mL) Italian-style tomatoes with herbs and spices, chopped, with juice
2 tablespoons parmesan cheese, grated
1/4 cup Panko
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
1 cup mozzarella cheese, grated

Wash and slice the eggplants.  In a large colander, toss the eggplant cubes with salt.  Allow the salted eggplant cubes to sit for approxinately one hour, or until the cubes release their juices.  Once the juices have been released, rinse well under cold water.  Drain, squeeze out excess moisture and pat dry with paper towels.

In a large nonstick skillet, over medium, heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil and all of the butter.  Add the onion and mushrooms, saute until softened (approximately 10 minutes).  Remove with slotted spoon and set aside.

Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil to the skillet.  In batches, saute the eggplant cubes until lightly browned (approximately 10 minutes).

In the slow cooker, layer half of the eggplant cubes, top with the entire onion mixture, then with half of the tomatoes (and juice).  Sprinkle with fresh parmesan cheese, then add the remaining eggplant and tomatoes (and juice).

In a separate bowl, combine the breadcrumbs, Italian seasoning and the mozzarella cheese.  Mix and spoon over the eggplant in the slow cooker.

Cover and cook on Low for 8-10 hours or on High for 4-6 hours, until the meal is bubbling.

Some tips from Canada's Best Slow Cooker Recipes:
- This can be eaten as a main course or as a side dish with salmon or chicken
- Slow cooking eggplant can cause it to become bitter, which is why it must be salted first
- This dish can be completely assembled up to 12 hours in advance of cooking.  Just prepare everything according to direction, but store in the fridge until morning (or when you put the stoneware into the base)

VERDICT:
Well...I can tell you that 1 out of 4 of us like eggplant.  That would be the baby...he ate a lot.  Not kidding...like two adult helpings worth.  Our oldest was under the weather and not really eating any dinner, so he had no opinion to offer.  Hubs and I....well, we liked the overall flavour of everything else, but we did not enjoy the texture of the eggplant.  Unfortunately, this dish just isn't for us...BUT I am glad that we gave it a try...you never know until you try!

HAVE YOU JOINED THE LINK PARTY YET?  This one is up all month...collecting your tried and true slow cooker recipes!  Thanks so much!

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