Grilled Eggplant, Mozzarella, Tomato, and Arugula Open-Faced Sandwiches

DSC_0288DSC_0289Sometimes on warm evenings it’s nice to take a break from the kitchen. These open-faced sandwiches make for a quick meal and are great served with fresh veggies and dip or a garden salad. If you don’t have a barbecue or indoor grill, try broiling the slices in the oven until they are slightly browned on each side and tender in the middle. If you like your eggplant on the crispier side, try sweating the eggplant before grilling it. To sweat the eggplant slices salt both sides and allow to sit for about 30 minutes (you will see beads of “sweat” appear). Then, rinse well with water and pat dry with paper towel.

Eggplant is a very good source of dietary fibre and manganese. It is in season in the summer and early fall.

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Grilled Eggplant, Mozzarella, Tomato, and Arugula Open-Faced Sandwiches

Makes about 4 servings.

Ingredients:

1 eggplant (sliced into 1/2″ thick slices)

2 tbsp olive oil

Salt and pepper to taste

8 thin slices mozzarella di bufala (or bocconcini cheese)

3 tbsp light mayonnaise

1 1/2 tbsp pesto

4 whole wheat buns split in half or 8 whole wheat slices of bread, toasted

1 1/2 cups arugula

1-2 vine tomatoes, sliced

Balsamic vinegar (higher quality balsamic vinegar or balsamic reduction is best!)

Directions:

  1. Preheat a barbecue or grill.
  2. Preheat an oven to 250 F and prepare a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  3. Brush eggplant slices with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill eggplants ~ 2 minutes on each side until eggplant is slightly browned and tender
  4. Place grilled eggplant on the baking sheet and top with a slice of mozzarella. Place in oven.
  5. Mix mayonnaise and pesto together. Spread on each slice of bread with.
  6. Arrange sandwiches with arugula, the cheese topped eggplant, and 1-2 slices of tomato. Drizzle with balsamic vinegar.

* Depending on the size of the buns or bread used, you may only need half the amount listed in the ingredients. If they are large portions, double up with two slices of eggplants, cheese, and tomato on each piece.

Recipe adapted from Thrifty Foods

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