Goat Cheese Eggplant 'Cannoli'

I have been on a real Italian kick lately, but given our attempts to eat healthier, pasta and bread really aren't on the menu. So, I came up with this healthy version of one of my favorite Italian treats - the cannoli.

What you'll need:

2 Medium Eggplants, sliced lengthwise into 1/2" slices
4 oz goat cheese
1 TSP capers, chopped
3 TBSP parsley, chopped
2 cans diced tomatoes
3 cloves garlic

I learned how to make marinara a few years ago from my old boss' extremely Italian, 80 year old aunt. In fact, she didn't even speak English and I learned just by watching. It's so simple and easy.  

The thing that was the most important was the garlic. If you burnt your garlic, you had to "clean your oil" and start all over again, because it is the cornerstone of an amazing sauce. Heat 1 TBSP of EVOO over medium heat and add minced garlic just as the oil is starting to heat. Once the garlic starts to sizzle, quickly add the tomatoes before the garlic has a chance to brown. 

Generously season with basil, oregano, and 1-2 bay leaves. Bring to a simmer and then reduce the heat to low and let reduce for about 20 minutes. After the sauce is done, spread evenly in a 9x13 baking dish. 

Meanwhile, coat your eggplant slices on each side with olive oil cooking spray. Broil your eggplant slices for about 10 minutes, flipping halfway. After the eggplant is done, heat your oven to 400 degrees. 

Next, mash the goat cheese, capers, and 2 TBSP of parsley in a bowl until combined. 

Place a spoonful of filling at the end of each eggplant slice.

Roll up each slice and place in the baking dish, seam side down. Bake in the oven for 10-15 minutes.

Serve on top of sauce and sprinkled with remaining parsley

Enjoy! ♥

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