The following recipe and photography were provided by local blogger Carolyn Hodges of The Dinner Shift.
Tender roasted eggplant is stuffed with seasoned lentils and creamy goat cheese, creating this easy vegetarian entrée or side dish. I love how fancy and festive it looks plated, and I’m even more excited about how simple it is to prepare. It’s a delicious plant-based addition to your holiday menu that’s also quick enough to cook any night of the week.
This recipe calls for minimal prep and is ready to serve in about 40 minutes. Opt for Heinen’s organic canned lentils to cut down on prep time. They’re high quality with a great flavor and texture, not bland or mushy like many other canned lentil varieties.
If you prefer to cook dried lentils, swap in about 1 ¾ cups of cooked brown, black or green lentils for the canned.
- Cook time:
- Prep time:
- Total time:
- 2 as a Main Dish, 4 as a Side Dish
- 2 medium eggplants, about 1 lb. each
- 3 Tbsp. Heinen’s olive oil, divided
- Kosher salt
- Black pepper
- 1 shallot, finely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- ½ tsp. Heinen’s dried thyme
- ¼ tsp. Heinen’s crushed red chili pepper
- 1 15 oz. can Heinen’s organic lentils, drained
- ½ tsp. red wine vinegar
- ⅓ cup Heinen’s crumbled goat cheese, plus more for garnish
- Vigeo microgreens, for garnish
- Preheat the oven to 425ºF. Cut the eggplant in half lengthwise (through the stem), then use a small paring knife to score the eggplant in a crisscross pattern. Drizzle each half with ½ Tbsp. of olive oil and season to taste with salt and pepper. Roast for 30 minutes. Use a fork to lightly mash the center of each eggplant half to create a ½-inch well.
- While the eggplant roasts, heat the remaining 1 Tbsp. of olive oil in a nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add the shallot and cook until soft and translucent, about 5 minutes.
- Add the garlic, thyme and chili pepper. Cook for 60 seconds, stirring constantly. Stir in the lentils and vinegar and cook until the lentils are warmed through, about 2 minutes. Fold in the goat cheese and season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Divide the lentil mixture among the roasted eggplant halves. Sprinkle with additional goat cheese and top with microgreens.
Inspired by Broma Bakery.