Sunday, February 4, 2007

Tonight's Dinner: Eggplant Croquettes and Herb Roasted Potatoes

Tonight's dinner is kind of light, because we filled up on Superbowl snacks.

The eggplant croquettes are another one from The Mediterranean Vegan Kitchen. I really do use other cookbooks; this recipe just caught my eye when I was flipping through for the pasta e fagioli recipe.

It's basically baked eggplant pureed with garlic and breadcrumbs, rolled in herbed breadcrumbs, brushed with olive oil, baked, and topped with tomato sauce.

The herb roasted potatoes are pretty easy to do: dice some potatoes (I used 3 small and that was more than enough), and in a bowl toss them with with a couple teaspoons of olive oil, a little salt, garlic powder, and italian seasoning until evenly coated. Place them in a baking dish and roast them at 400F for about 20-30 minutes or until golden.

The croquettes came out really well; they took a little while because I had to make the breadcrumbs myself (see below) and they need to be refrigerated before you form them into balls, but other than that they were pretty easy. In the future, I'll probably let them cook a bit longer at a lower temperature because they were a bit mushy in the center -- but still tasty.

Making Breadcrumbs

I know I can't be the only vegan who has trouble finding breadcrumbs -- for some reason even the "unseasoned" varities all have cheese in them. Fortunately, making your own is really easy.

Just take a couple slices of bread and bake them in the oven or the toaster oven at the lowest temperature -- usually around 200F -- for about twenty minutes, or until the bread feels hard and dried out. Then, break the bread into big chunks, put it in the food processor, and pulse until you have breadcrumbs.

I actually like doing it this way, because I can use whole wheat and they taste a lot fresher than store-bought breadcrumbs.

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