6 (1/3-1/2-inch thick) slices eggplant, about 4 inches in diameter
Thick slices artisan bread, such as ciabatta, Italian, etc. (about 9 x 12 inches surface area)
Marinara sauce (about 1 cup)
1 oz. soft fresh goat cheese (I used garlic herb)
¼ cup chopped fresh basil, plus extra for garnish
1 cup coarsely grated mozzarella cheese
Preheat the oven to 400 F. Heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a
skillet over medium-high heat. Season the eggplant slices with
salt and pepper. Lay the eggplant in the heated skillet. Reduce
the heat to medium-low and cook, turning, until the eggplant is
lightly browned on both sides, about 6 minutes total. Transfer to
a plate and set aside. Brush the cut side of the bread slices with
the remaining oil and cook in the warm skillet on medium-high
heat until golden brown, 1-2 minutes.
Lay the bread, cut side up, on a baking sheet. Spread a thin layer
of the marinara sauce on each slice. Crumble the goat cheese over
the marinara and sprinkle with chopped basil. Lay the egg plant
slices on top of the marinara. Sprinkle the shredded mozzarella
over the eggplant slices and dot lightly with remaining marinara
Bake until the topping is hot and slightly browned, about 12
minutes. Slice into small pieces. Garnish with additional basil
leaves as desired.
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