The Cooking Cardiologist Dr. Richard Collins shows us how to make Grilled Eggplant Pizza Sliders.
Grilled Eggplant Pizza Sliders
Richard Collins, MD
The Cooking Cardiologist®
This recipe is a tribute to Julia Child. In her cookbook, From Julia’s kitchen, 1975, she created a most unique recipe, way ahead of her time before “carbo-phobia” and the Paleo diet appeared on the scene. The pizza “crust” is created from a roasted sliced Italian spiced eggplant, (Tranches d’aubergine a L’italienne).
I have modified her recipe to create pizza sliders on the grill. In addition, the sauce is grocery-store-bought (a change that Julia would not have appreciated to this day). However, the concept is the same as the crust is gluten free and the veggie options here are endless.
There’s a secret to getting fresh fast pizza toppings, go to the veggie salad section of a full service natural grocery store. Pick organic, fresh vegetables and up-to-date food ingredients.
For her original recipe and her home made sauce, check out a number of websites or purchase her first edition, From Julia’s Kitchen.
For the pizza “dough”
1 medium sized eggplant, washed, and sliced into ¼ inch slices, approximately 8 slices. Discard the stem and the tapered end
1T sea salt
2T basil infused olive oil (available at EVVO Market Place, Littleton) or substitute regular olive oil
2t Italian seasoning
For the toppings:
Pasta or pizza sauce of preference or purchased pre-made pesto sauce. My favorite tomato sauce is Mia’s Bistro Kitchen, Sonoma, CA available at most grocery stores
Pick 2-3 toppings such as mushrooms, sliced roasted bell peppers, artichokes, cherry tomatoes, sautéed onions, olives, spinach, hot peppers, tofu, grilled zucchini, peas, carrots, sprouts, and cheeses…1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan, 1/3 cup reduced fat grated Italian cheeses, or sliced Buffalo mozzarella.
Preheat grill to medium heat with a pizza stone centered on the grill. To prepare the eggplant, place the cut slices onto a cookie sheet. Sprinkle both sides of the eggplant slices with salt. Let sit for 5 minutes. Wipe off the salt and liquid with a paper towel. This process dries the eggplant and removes the bitter earthy flavors. Return the slices to the cookie sheet. Drizzle the olive oil over both sides, coating each slice. Sprinkle the tops of each eggplant with Italian seasoning. Place on the pizza stone. Grill both sides to slightly roast the eggplant. Do not burn. Remove from the pizza stone and return to the cookie sheet. Add a tablespoon of tomato sauce and your toppings of choice finishing with the mozzarella and the Parmesan cheese.
Return to the grill and roast for 5-10 minutes to allow cheese to completely melt.
Serves 4. Serving size: 2 pizza sliders. Note: Nutritional analysis is for the eggplant pizza “dough” with comparison to standard pizza dough for 2 slices. Since the toppings are your preferences and amounts, nutritional analysis cannot be made for each pizza slider.