Ricotta Stuffed Eggplant Rolls Borderlands Food Bank Style

Twelve Servings

Borderlands Food Bank sits on the Mecca of the produce industry around the Nation. We are located in the Border community of Nogales, Arizona and distribute more than 40 million lbs. of fresh vegetables and fruits through-out the State of Arizona and 13 other states in the U.S. Because we are International, we also share with our sister state of Sonora, Mexico.  

We have an abundance of tomatoes of different types year round; eggplant is plentiful too. With so much nutritious product available, we share recipes with our clients on a regular basis to promote healthy eating. The following recipe is a favorite among our staff and clients. You can prepare this tasty dish with our homemade Marinara Sauce; or simply use your favorite brand.  

Ingredients

2 Eggplants 
1 c. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 lbs. Ricotta Cheese
16 oz. Romano Cheese (grated)
10 Fresh Basil, Chopped
Salt and Pepper
4 Eggs
2 c Shredded mozzarella cheese
Marinara Sauce (recipe page 2)

Preparation Instructions

Eggplant
Slice the eggplant lengthwise 1/8 of an inch thick
Heat the grill ( I use a George Foreman ) or oven to 400°
Lightly coat each piece of eggplant with oil and place on the grill for 1 minute
Flip the eggplant and grill for one more minute
Lay Eggplant side by side on a waxed paper lined cookie sheet for a few minutes

Filling

Combine the ricotta, Romano, basil, eggs, mozzarella, salt and pepper and mix well

Baking Time
Preheat oven to 400°
Place 2 tablespoons of the ricotta filling on each piece of Eggplant and roll
In two 11 3/4 x 7 1/2 x 1 3/4 inch baking dishes put 1 cup of marinara sauce to evenly coat the bottom of the dish 
Arrange the eggplant rolls seam side down in single layers uniformly in the pan
Top each roll with marinara sauce and place the dish in the oven
Allow the eggplant rolls to bake for 30 minutes at 450°
Eggplant rolls may be frozen for two weeks. Defrost in refrigerator overnight; bake as directed above.

Marinara Sauce

10 tomatoes (romas)
1 onion, peeled and chopped
5 Tablespoons olive oil
1 bay leaf
6 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons fresh basil chopped
8 oz. can tomato paste
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon oregano
1 ½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper 
½ c red wine 
Heat a large stockpot over medium heat. Add olive oil and garlic. Sauté for about 3 minutes then add the minced onions; sauté for about 5 minutes and put heat on low and simmer.
Remove the stem-end of the tomatoes, drop tomatoes into boiling water and blanch for about 1 minute, remove and drain; run cold water over tomatoes.  
Peel tomatoes and blend them in a food processor or blender to desired texture.  
Add tomatoes to the stock pot and stir in tomato paste; simmer for 5 minutes
Add chopped basil, bay leaf, oregano and seasoning to taste; simmer for 15 minutes
Stir in red wine to sauce
Cook, uncovered, for about 3 hours or until sauce has thickened to desired consistency; stir sauce occasionally








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