I’ve been on somewhat of a health kick lately – no processed food, not too much chocolate or drinking during the week. After all, garbage in is garbage out and since I’ve been really getting back into triathlon training these past couple of weeks, I need all the energy I can get!
I came up with the recipe below a few nights ago. Sometimes those made-up meals can be a huge flop, but sometimes you can surprise yourself with something super tasty. These eggplant rolls definitely fall into the latter category (at least in my opinion – try them and let me know what you think!). I’ve been trying to work winter greens into most of my meals (they’re packed full of amazing nutrients like iron and Vitamin K), and quinoa has the highest protein content of any grain, so these are great for adding some extra nutrients to your diet. These eggplant rolls have it all – vegetables, protein, and whole grains!!
2 cups vegetable or chicken broth
1 cup quinoa
1 large eggplant
1 bunch chard
1 small onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 lb. dark ground turkey (beef or tofu can be substituted)
italian seasoning (or other herbs – your choice)
1 1/2 cups tomato sauce
1/4 cup Parmesan
1. Turn oven to 425° F.
2. Bring broth to a boil in a pot and add quinoa. Cover and turn down heat to medium-low and let simmer until the quinoa has fully absorbed the broth.
3. Slice eggplant length-wise into 1/4 inch thick slices. Brush both sides of the eggplant slices with a bit of olive oil and lay them on baking sheets. Bake for about 7 minutes until they’re just starting to brown and are flexible (easy to roll).
4. Cut the chard leaves away from the stalks and discard the stalks. Slice the leaves into strips, and then slice the strips into smaller pieces cross-wise.
5. Sauté onion and garlic in a large pan over medium-high heat until soft. Add ground turkey and continue to sauté until turkey is almost cooked through. Add paprika and italian seasoning, sauté for another minute, and then add chard. Continue cooking until the turkey is cooked through. Turn off the heat and add cooked quinoa to this mixture.
6. Turn oven down to 375° F. Oil a lasagna dish.
7. Scoop a mound of filling onto the middle of one of the eggplant slices. How much you’ll use will depend on the size of the slices – I used about 1/3 cup for the large slices and much less for the smaller ones. Fold both sides over the filling, and turn upside down to put in the dish so that the edges are on the bottom. Continue with all of the eggplant slices.
8. When all of the eggplant slices have been used up, spoon the tomato sauce over the eggplant rolls and sprinkle the Parmesan over the top. You’ll probably have filling left over, and this is great in a pita or wrap!
9. Bake the rolls for about 25 minutes.