Roasted Eggplant and Oysters

2 eggplants, firm
4 cups onion, 1/2 inch dice
3/4 cup unsalted butter
1 cup bacon, 1/2 inch dice
1/2 cup plus 4 heaping teaspoons Italian bread crumbs
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 1/2 pints shucked oysters (about 2 1/2 dozen medium-sized oysters), drained

  1. Preheat the oven to 425F.
  2. Pierce the eggplants several times with a fork and place on a baking sheet.
  3. Bake eggplants 30 minutes or until very tender. Test with a skewer to see if the center is done. Remove from oven and cool. Keep oven hot.
  4. Saute the onion in 1/4 cup of the butter until glazed, but not brown.
  5. In another small skillet, fry the bacon until crisp. Drain on several layers of paper towels.
  6. With a sharp knife, cut off the stem ends of the eggplants and peel them carefully. Discard the skin and place the pulp of the eggplants in a colander to drain. Chop into 3/4 inch cubes and combine with the sauteed onion..
  7. Crumble the bacon into the mixture, then add 1/2 cup bread crumbs, the salt, pepper, and oysters.
  8. melt the remaining butter in a small saucepan.
  9. Divide the eggplant pulp and oyster mixture into 4 equal portions and place in individual ramekins. Pour melted butter over each portion Sprinle each evnely with remaining bread crumbs.
  10. Bake for 20 minutes, or until the mixture bubbles vigorously around the edges and the top is well browned.

Chef: little burnt on top broth picked up the flavor of the oyster, good texture.

Personal/Team: It seemed that most people either didn't like eggplant or oysters in general, so it wasn't a big hit, but I loved it. I thought the texture of the roasted eggplant was nice and the flavor was rich. The combination of the oyster and eggplant went well together.

Lessons Learned: you can roast eggplant hole, but be sure to put poke holes in it so it doesn't explode. Also, with a breadcrumb topping, you want to brown, but not burn, so keep an cloe eye on it, should not cook too long.