How To Make Eggplant Meatballs

hi guys i want to share with you how to make uh eggplant meatballs they are really delicious every day and picks fresh eggplant every day i figure there’s no better time than now to share with you how to make them they are very easy and simple there’s a million recipes on the web for how to make them and i just want to show you show you how to make them super straightforward and easy but so delicious you’re gonna love them so i’ve got a large saucepan here this is the pan that i’m gonna make my sauce in so i don’t want to dirty up two pans but you can also do that this is a skillet sorry you can also do this step in like a large saucepan.

I just have a little bit of olive oil in here coming up to temperature about medium high now for the eggplant you want to make sure there are some pieces with seeds in them but if any eggplant had a lot of seeds in them i removed the core because otherwise the seeds make everything really bitter and then they never soften so you just kind of always get them in your mouth and they annoy me and you just want to cut them into about you know a small cube i peeled most of the eggplant but i left a little bit of the skin on on some of the eggplant just because i like it but you can peel it all or you can leave it all on totally up to you in the skillet i’m going to add the eggplant i have that like i said with just a little bit of olive oil because we need to cook this down until it’s nice and soft .

I’m just gonna mix that around with my wooden spoon and you can also do this in the oven i’ve seen um a few recipes of people doing that where they basically like bake the entire eggplant in the oven and then just take out the flesh and use that to make the meatballs and i think that’s a great idea i don’t prefer doing it that way because again you get a lot of the seeds um and just not my favorite but you can do whatever you like so what i’m going to do now you’re not looking to saute this and develop color or anything like that it’s absorbed a little bit of the oil so it’s got a little bit of flavor you need some salt to help draw out the moisture and now you’re going to add a little bit of water about about a quarter cup and i’m gonna go ahead and cover this and cook the eggplant for about 15 ish minutes or until it’s really soft and .

I’ll show you what it looks like when it’s there if your eggplant mixture has too much liquid the last five minutes cook it on medium high so that the the that water and that liquid can evaporate and that way you don’t you’re not left with a bunch of water at the bottom of your skillet that looks great at the last minute i just cranked up the heat to medium high so that all the excess moisture would evaporate and now i’m gonna just put it in a shallow bowl here just a little pan and i’m gonna pop this into the fridge to cool you don’t have to do that um i just want these to like cool down fast so i’m going to go ahead and do that and then i will show you the next step you want to make sure that these are quite cold before you move on so go do that my eggplant has cooled i’ve got the rest of my filling.

We’re gonna put it all together i also have a mandatory pre-dinner cup of coffee if any of you are like me and you need that pre-dinner coffee let me know down below everybody else thinks i’m crazy but hey we gotta keep the show going right can function without it okay for your filling you’re gonna need italian style bread crumbs that just means are italian seasoned breadcrumbs lots of garlic i do a mixture of parsley and basil a mixture of pecorino and parmigiano if you don’t want to spend money on pecorino it’s at the bottom by the way i do all part but here’s a great tip i don’t buy picorino often um so when i do i buy it pre-graded and i buy small tubs of it that way i use it up really fast because if i buy a big block i won’t use it in time it’ll go bad right so always do that then you need an egg and a little bit of flour and some salt and those are all the ingredients you need to make the filling and they are fantastic .

Now you can pretty much add whatever you want to this if you wanted to add some grated onions add some grated onions if you wanted to grab you know add whatever whatever flavorings your heart desires go for it this to me is perfect and they hold up really really well when you cook them now i don’t bake mine i don’t fry mine i have two tablespoons of flour it just sort of helps absorb any excess moisture i bake mine i don’t fry you could fry if you wanted to but i do not so the mixture is going to look really dry at first but you’re just going to give it a go and keep mixing it and as you’re mixing it you’re going to just kind of like squish down on that eggplant just keep it mixing because as these bake they’ll just hold up really nicely okay now all i’m going to do is.

I’m going to just cover this with a plate and i’m going to pop it into the freezer for 10 minutes that’s just gonna to help with the texture in the meantime get your oven preheated to 375 get a baking sheet line it with parchment paper drizzle it with some olive oil set that aside we’re going to chill these for a second and then we’ll move on to the next step all right so we are ready now what i need you to do is get a small bowl with some water dampen your hands clean hands perfect for because you don’t want this mixture to stick all over your hands and then you’re just going to form them into whatever size meatballs that you want you can make them really small you can make them a little bit bigger you know whatever your heart desires and the water just kind of helps like.

I said nothing stick um if like i said i’m going to go ahead and bake them that’s why i have them on parchment paper with a little bit of oil but you can absolutely fry these um in a you know in a in a pan with some light olive oil and just shallow fry until they’re crispy in all sides that would that’s great it gives you a lot of really good texture it gives you a little bit of a crispy edge um you know kind of trying to keep it a little lighter considering there’s a lot of bread crumbs in here i figured we would skip that part but truly they just become so delicious when you bake them and then you make them into the sauce that they’re delicious they are delicious so what i’m going to do is i am just going to form all of them and then i’m going to brush the tops with just a little bit more oil and i’m going to pop them into my oven at 375 for about 20 minutes and in the meantime.

We are going to make our very quick sauce that these are going to bathe in once already okay in the same skillet we are just going to go ahead and make a really quick delicious marinara sauce you don’t have to by the way you can just go ahead and use your very favorite marinara sauce or you can use a store-bought sauce whatever you have on hand you need about four cups for me when i have some really nice plum tomatoes or you know whatever tomato product i like to use from a marinara sauce it’s just as easy making it myself if i’ve got the time anyway so while those are cooking i’m just going to go ahead and whip it up really quick a little bit of olive oil and some garlic in the skillet wait for that to heat up together so that as the garlic heats up it infuses its flavor into the oil.

If you were to add garlic straight to hot oil the garlic will sizzle and you won’t really get all of that infused into the oil that flavor infused into the oil when it infuses into the oil it infuses into your entire sauce that’s it so once this kind of comes to a little bit of a bubble here i’ve got some plum tomatoes this is just a can of san marzano plum tomatoes i added a little bit of water kind of rinsed out the can and added to it and then you need some basil i’ve got some olive oil i’m going to add oil some salt i’m also going to go ahead and grab a pinch of oregano and um once this gets going we’ll add the sauce this is looking really good smelling good already the eggplant smelling good the garlic starting to sizzle okay that one’s got a little bit of skin on it it’s okay careful not to get splattered now as this cooks down as it starts to heat up the tomatoes.

I’m going to go ahead and mash them up really nicely you can use crushed tomatoes you can use diced you can use whatever your heart desires by all means do whatever you want and use whatever you’ve got on hand so what i’m going to do now is just let this warm up a little bit like i said as the tomatoes warm up to be easier for me to cut you know to chop them all up then i’ll add my basil my oregano and some salt and i’m going to let it simmer 20 minutes along with the eggplant that’s it sauce is ready it’s been bubbling for about 20 minutes the eggplant meatballs are ready they were in the oven in 20 minutes and look at the bottom of those gorgeous visually i know they’re not brown and crispy like.

I said if you were to fry them they would be but these are gonna nestle in the sauce you only want to cook them in the sauce about five minutes otherwise they start to fall apart and you don’t want to do that that will defeat the purpose now let me give you a tip a couple tips um save a few of the eggplant because if you’re a salad girl like me these on a salad tomorrow drizzled with um like a tahini lemon situation will are phenomenal you will absolutely love them let me tell you what else is really fantastic about these you can turn them into meatball parm sandwiches right i’m going to just serve them like this tonight but you can bet that i am most definitely i like to just turn them once oh i broke that one i have some fresh mozzarella on hand and i’m most definitely going to put some mozzarella on this and let it all melt together and be absolutely phenomenal.

So i’m just going to spoon a little bit of the sauce on top let these simmer five minutes and then we give them a taste test i need a spoon [Music] look at that they look gorgeous and when you make this make sure that you make them in a non-stick skillet because what happens is they can sometimes i already ate one they can sometimes stick to the bottom of the pan you don’t want to do that because they’re quite fragile they’re quite fragile and they are so beautiful they are so yummy i’m just gonna go ahead and taste one and i bet you you can fake out kids in eating one of these see how they just sit together really well there’s chunks of eggplant i know some people like to puree their eggplant when they make these i don’t because i don’t want to lose some of that chunky you know some of those chunky pieces of eggplant otherwise it’s too mushy they are so delicious but i’m gonna tell you this if you are a texture person you need something crispy fry them shallow fry instead of baking them then you’ll have the best of all worlds i’m going to go ahead and put parmesan cheese all over it and then mozzarella and serve it to the table because that’s what’s a good self-respect that italian does if she’s got mozzarella in the fridge you hope you enjoyed spending time with me.