This version of the Provençal classic substitutes carrots for the zucchini and relies on Eastern seasonings rather than the French standards of basil and thyme. The eggplants in this dish are so tender and flavorful that they melt in your mouth.
makes 6 servings
4 small eggplants
1/2 cup olive oil
1 large onion, sliced in narrow wedges
2 carrots, thinly sliced
1 small green pepper, chopped
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
5-6 tomatoes, peeled and chopped, reserving any juice from the tomatoes
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup pine nuts, toasted (optional)
1/2 cup chicken broth
1/4 cup red wine
1 Tbs honey
1 bay leaf
1 cinnamon stick
salt and pepper to taste
minced fresh parsley, for garnish
1. Remove stem and base from each eggplant. Slice in 1-inch rounds and then cut each round in half. Place in a colander and sprinkle generously with salt. Allow to sit for one hour, then rinse eggplant and pat dry.
2. Preheat oven to 350°F.
3. In a Dutch oven on the stove, heat the olive oil on medium and sauté the onions, carrots, peppers and garlic until softened. Add eggplant and cook for 10 minutes, stirring regularly.
4. Add tomatoes and juice, raisins, pine nuts, chicken broth, red wine, honey, bay leaf, cinnamon stick and salt and pepper. Stir until thoroughly blended and then bring to a boil. Cover and bake in the oven for one hour and fifteen minutes. Allow to cool for at least 10 to 15 minutes before serving. Sauce will thicken to a stew-like consistency. Serve over rice, gluten-free pasta or quinoa.
Nut-Free: omit pine nuts
Vegan: substitute vegetable broth for chicken broth and agave nectar for honey