Grilled eggplant and goat cheese Mac & Cheese — Week 16: Vegetarian

This week’s vegetarian theme made me think for a long time before deciding what type of mac & cheese to make. I wanted an innovative, gourmet version this time.

My inspiration: moussaka, the Greek dish made with grilled, melt-in-your-mouth eggplant and roasted garlic. Although it usually contains meat, it can be adapted into a vegetarian dish.

I alternated layers of creamy cheese macaroni, grilled eggplant, mashed tomatoes and goat cheese.

In the absence of lamb, it’s the goat cheese that gives this mac & cheese its special exotic flavour.

A weekday vegetarian dish that’s fancy enough for guests.

Preparation

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C).   
  2. Disgorge the eggplant, rinse well with cold water and dry it out.

    SAUCE
  3. In a pot, melt the butter and soften the garlic.  
  4. Add the flour and stir 1 minute, making sure that the flour doesn’t brown.
  5. Gradually add milk, beating with a whisk to obtain a smooth sauce. Simmer for 15 minutes, stirring regularly until sauce thickens.

    MACARONI
  6. Mix the parmesan and pasta into the sauce. Season with salt and pepper.
  7. In a pan, heat the oil and brown eggplant. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.
  8. In a baking dish, layer pasta, eggplant, mashed tomatoes, thyme and goat cheese. Finish with an eggplant, tomato, and goat cheese layer. Garnish with breadcrumbs mixed with melted butter. Bake for about 15 minutes or until golden.

Johanne Depelteau

Longueuil, Quebec

Johanne, a passionate lover of the culinary arts, has been working in television broadcasting, publishing, magazine writing and advertising for many years.

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