Stuffed Eggplant Armenian (Imam Bayildi)

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Stuffed Eggplant Armenian (Imam Bayildi)
  1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F (230 degrees C).

  2. Cut eggplants in 1/2, then cut each 1/2 into thirds, leaving 12 eggplant spears total. Place on a baking sheet and brush with 2 tablespoons olive oil.

  3. Roast in the preheated oven until fork tender, 15 to 20 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

  4. While eggplants are cooking, heat remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat in a medium to large pan. Add bell pepper, onion, and garlic to the hot pan and cook until onions become tender, 5 to 7 minutes. Stir in tomatoes and cook until most of the liquid has evaporated, 2 to 3 minutes. Set aside to cool.

  5. Remove eggplants from the oven and let cool slightly, 5 to 10 minutes. Transfer eggplants to a 9×13-inch baking dish. Slice each spear vertically using a fork and knife, being careful not to cut through skin. Pry each open and fill with 2 to 3 tablespoons of tomato filling. Cover with tomato sauce.

  6. Bake in the preheated oven until bubbling, about 30 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Garnish with parsley.

Cook’s Notes:

You can use a green bell pepper instead of red or a combination of both.

Once you fill eggplants, you can alternatively pour 1/2 the tomato sauce over eggplants and cover the dish with plastic wrap to chill, 8 hours to overnight. Before baking, cover with remaining tomato sauce.

This stores well in the refrigerator for lunch the next day.

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