Vegetarian Eggplant Meatballs

took a few different recipes and combined them into one of my own

* serving size about 15 golf-sized balls

1 large eggplant
1 cup finely grated Parmigiano Reggiano
1 egg, lightly beaten
3 – 4 cloves garlic, crushed
bunch flat leaf (Italian) parsley, finely chopped
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 – 1 cup dry breadcrumbs
olive oil

1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
2. Wash the eggplant and prick all over with a fork. Place in a baking dish and dry bake for about 50-60 minutes, turning occasionally, until it is quite shriveled and tender inside. When done, set aside to cool. Keep oven on.
3. Cut the top off the eggplant and peel off the skin – it should come away in strips. Cut into chunks and then place in a blender and blend it until it was partially smooth but still a bit chunky.
4.In a large bowl, using a wooden spoon or flexible spatula, stir together cheese, egg, garlic and parsley. Add in eggplant. Mix everything together thoroughly then start adding dry breadcrumbs bit by bit. (How much you need will depend on the wetness of everything else, if pressed in your hand it should stay together.)
5. Drizzle a little olive oil onto a baking sheet.
6. Take golf ball sized handfuls of mixture and roll between your palms into balls and place on the baking sheet.
7. Bake in 350 F oven for 30-40 minutes until golden brown.


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