This bold Middle-Eastern dish is packed with real vegetables, ground lamb, herbs, and spices.
- 1 medium eggplant
- 8 ounces ground lamb
- ⅓ cup chopped onion
- ⅓ cup chopped celery
- ⅓ cup chopped green pepper
- ⅔ cup cooked rice
- 1 small tomato, chopped
- 1 teaspoon salt, optional
- ¼ teaspoon basil leaves, crushed
- ¼ teaspoon thyme leaves, crushed
- ⅛ teaspoon ground black pepper
- ¼ cup (1 ounce) grated Monterey Jack cheese
- Split the eggplant lengthwise or cut off the cap of the eggplant and cut in half lengthwise. Scoop out pulp, leaving a ¼-inch shell.
- Chop the pulp; cover with water and cook about 5 minutes. Drain; set aside.
- Cook lamb in a medium skillet until meat is no longer pink, stirring to crumble.
- Add onion, celery and green pepper; cook until tender crisp.
- Pour off fat.
- Stir rice, tomato, salt, basil, thyme, black pepper, and eggplant pulp into vegetables.
- Fill eggplant shells. Spoon any extra rice mixture into small baking dish.
- Place eggplant halves in a shallow, baking dish; bake at 350° F/180° C for 20 minutes.
- Sprinkle with cheese; bake 5 minutes longer.
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