Roasted Eggplant Stuffed with Beef

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Preparation time:
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Difficulty: Easy - for beginners
Serves: 4


2 eggplants (16 ounces each)
2 TBS extra virgin olive oil
1/2 large onion, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 pound extra-lean ground beef
11/2 tsp dried oregano
1/2 C tomato sauce
1/2 C (2 ounces) grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground black pepper


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 a 1/2" to 3/4" shell. Set the shells aside.
Chop the pulp and let drain in a colander in the sink.
Heat 1 TBS 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 in1/4 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 for 15 minutes, or until lightly browned on top.


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