Rolled Eggplant with Red Peppers, Basil-Whipped Chèvre and Tomato Sauce

  • This is quite possibly our favorite eggplant recipe of all time, and makes for the perfect little appetizer, first course, or meatless main. What can possibly be more delicious than eggplant sautéed in olive oil, smeared with soft goat cheese whipped with basil and cream, and topped off with roasted red peppers and warm tomato sauce? Nothing! Absolutely nothing!!
  • Prep time: 30 minutes
  • Cook time: 30 minutes
  • Serves 6


  • 4 Japanese eggplants
  • 4 red bell peppers
  • extra-virgin olive oil
  • 8 ounces chèvre, or fresh goat cheese
  • scant ¼ cup heavy cream
  • 1 bunch basil
  • kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 2 cups homemade tomato sauce, or your favorite store bought brand, warmed


  • To prepare the eggplant, remove the tops and bottoms, and slice lengthwise into ¼-inch rounds. Season each slice with salt and pepper..
  • Warm 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Fry the eggplant, on both sides until soft and golden, in batches. Add a bit more olive oil if the pan becomes dry. Transfer the eggplant to a paper towel-lined plate or baking dish and set aside.
  • Set the broiler to high and move your oven rack to 6 inches below the heating element.
  • To prepare the peppers, slice each one into 4 pieces, working from top to bottom and around the stem, leaving the core and seeds behind. Place the slices of pepper cut-side down and skin-side up on a heavy baking sheet and roast under the broiler until they are nicely charred, about 10 minutes. Place the charred peppers in a bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and allow to steam for about 10 minutes. Remove and discard the skins. Tear each pepper slice in half and set aside.
  • Slice the basil into thin ribbons by stacking half of the leaves on top of one another and rolling them up like a cigar. Transfer to a bowl with the chèvre and heavy cream. Mix gently with a wooden spoon until combined. Tear the remaining basil leaves into pieces and set aside.
  • To assemble the eggplant, lay each slice on a work surface. Spread on a spoonful of goat cheese and top with 2 slices of roasted red pepper. From the short end, roll the eggplant and transfer to a baking dish or serving plate. Continue with the rest of the eggplant.
  • Note: The eggplant can be made a day ahead up to this point. When ready to serve, cover your baking dish with aluminum foil and rewarm the eggplant in a 350℉ oven for 20 minutes.
  • To serve, place a spoonful of warm tomato sauce on each plate and top with 2 to 3 pieces of rolled eggplant. Drizzle each plate with olive oil and garnish with the remaining torn basil leaves.