Eggplant Pizza PIE
Have you ever been invited to someone’s home for a meal and once you get there just know you are not going to like what they are serving but you need to be polite anyhow? This is how it was with the following recipe and I was in for a big surprise…I liked it. I really like it.
EGGPLANT PIZZA PIE
I was sure I wouldn’t like it. It is not my idea of pizza. My neighbor had invited me over for dinner and to watch a favorite TV show with her. I like my neighbor and she is good to me but she is one of those “my way or no way” sort of people and is that way when it comes to her cooking too. She is also easily offended so I always try to be gracious and to keep my opinions to myself and have learned not to make too many suggestions even though she is half my age and still has a lot to learn about life.
She is still a good person and she means well. It is just her cooking, well, I’ve learned to be gracious and unless it is really awful or something I cannot eat for health reasons; like I said, I’ve learned to be gracious. Some of her cooking is fabulous and her eggplant pizza actually turned out to be really good, good enough so that I asked her how to make it. She shared her secret. Here is how to make it. I think you will like it. It is surprisingly good.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees
Place prepared thick crust, pizza crust on baking pan or stone.
Score the pizza crust with a sharp kitchen knife but be careful not to cut through it.
Brush lightly with olive oil and a light sprinkle of garlic powder and spread a layer of ricotta cheese over the crust; sprinkle Romano cheese lightly over the top with a little salt and pepper. Set aside.
Wash and cut up one dark purple eggplant and bring to boil in a saucepan of lightly salted water. Reduce heat to simmer and cook for 8 to 10 minutes. Drain well and flush with warm water. Drain well and divide in half and place half your eggplant in a mixing bowl and coarsely chop. To the chopped eggplant add
1/2 pound cooked sausage; cooked loose, scrambled with
2 Tbsp. chopped onion
2 Tbsp. celery thin sliced
2 cloves garlic minced
1 tsp. Italian seasoning
Pinch of red pepper flakes
When sausage is done and onion is transparent Add
1 full cup salsa
Mix together and spread on top of the prepared pizza crust
Top with remaining pieces of eggplant and
Top this with a liberal amount of shredded mozzarella cheese
Slice 1 firm red tomato and arrange over the mozzarella
Sprinkle with finely chopped fresh parsley
Place in oven and bake until cheese is melted and just starting to turn light golden brown. Remove from oven and cool for 5-7 minutes. Slice and serve. (You need a fork to eat it.)
Now I am not big on sausage and I am fussy about how my eggplant is prepared so I requested just a small slice (since I wasn’t really hungry) and determined I would eat it and like it. Surprisingly I did and went back for a second slice. I guess I was hungrier than I thought I was. It was really good and I didn’t have to just pretend to be gracious and then go home later and fix myself something else to eat. I enjoyed it; and being her guest for the evening. We had a good time and even though this was not my idea of how to make pizza (eggplant is good on pizza) her Eggplant Pizza was worth snagging the recipe for and I have made it myself since; minus the sausage. I added leftover roasted chicken breast instead…and it was very good.
Oh yes, she served a pumpkin raisin cake for dessert topped with whipped cream and we had soft drinks for a beverage. I didn’t have to pretend to enjoy it. I did.