RICOTTA STUFFED EGGPLANT MEAT(LESS)BALLS
makes approx. 12
1 lb. eggplant
1 large egg, slightly beaten
1 1/4 c. breadcrumbs
1/4 c. grated pecorino cheese (or parmesan)
1/4 c. raisins
2 Tbsp. pinoli (pine nuts)
2/3 c. whole milk ricotta
1/4 c. mozzarella, finely chopped
2 Tbsp. grated pecorino or parmesan cheese
1 tsp. fresh parsley, finely chopped salt & pepper to taste
Peel the eggplant & cut it into 1 inch pieces. Bring a large pot of water to a boil, add salt & the eggplant. Cook until tender about 15 minutes. Drain the eggplant & cool it COMPLETELY. Try to extract most of the liquid from the eggplant by wrapping it in paper towel & squeezing. When it’s ready, finely chop the soft eggplant.
In a large bowl place the pecorino, raisins, pine nuts, egg & stir together. Add the eggplant, salt, pepper & mix together. If you feel the eggplant is to soft & not holding together add a little more breadcrumbs. Form the eggplant into balls of your desired size. Mine were slightly larger than a golf ball. Hold the ball in your hand & make an indentation with your thumb in the middle of the ball. Place about a tablespoon of cheese filling in the middle & cover the hole with eggplant. Roll each ball into more breadcrumbs & place in a hot fry pan set on medium high. Cook until golden. These can be eaten as is or with tomato sauce.
*DIVA NOTE* the filling will make the balls larger, so take this into consideration when forming them.
TO MAKE THE FILLING
Add all the ingredients together in a medium bowl & stir.