Roasted Eggplant Stuffed With Beef

Description
The presentation for this dish looks elaborate, but its preparation is really quite easy. You can prepare the stuffing mixture ahead and fill the eggplant shells just before roasting.

Serves 4

Ingredients
2 eggplants (16 ounces each)
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 large onion, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 pound extra-lean ground beef
1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
1/2 cup tomato sauce
1/2 cup (2 ounces) grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

Instructions
Preheat the oven to 400°F.

Pierce the eggplants in 2 or 3 places and place on a baking sheet. Roast, turning once or twice, for 20 minutes, or just until tender. When cool enough to handle, halve lengthwise and scoop out the pulp, leaving 1/2″ to 3/4″ of the shell. Set the shells aside. Chop the pulp and let drain in a colander in the sink.

Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and bell pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, for 8 minutes, or until tender. Add the garlic and beef and cook, stirring to crumble the beef, for 5 minutes, or until no longer pink. Stir in the eggplant pulp, oregano, and tomato sauce. Reduce the heat to low and cook, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes or until thick. Stir in 1/4 cup of the cheese, the salt, and black pepper.

Place the eggplant shells on a baking sheet and evenly divide the beef mixture among them. Sprinkle with the remaining 1/4 cup cheese and drizzle with the remaining 1 tablespoon oil. Roast 15 minutes, or until lightly browned on top.

Nutritional information
Per serving:
342 calories
17 g fat (6 g sat)
21 g carbohydrate
31 g protein
7 g fiber
677 mg sodium
71 mg cholesterol

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