This recipe is a variant of the Eggplants Rolls with Cream Cheese and Smoked Bressaola that I have created and added to my Cookbook, which you can still find by clicking this link and get a discounted price for a limited time. If you want to know how to transform this recipe into something you can preserve in a Mason Jar and use Bressaola instead of pork charcuterie (and offer it as a present to someone, or consume by yourself at home), click on that link!
I usually do not consume pork but from time to time I make an exception when it is smoked AND when it comes from a special area with Fame. Both conditions must be met together. Like today. This afternoon, my husband and I strolled around at the Christmas Market in Nice. Beside the usual artesan corner where one can buy some artsies from local producers, this year the emphasis of the Market definitely is on the regional specialty foods. Look who’s happy here?! Cheese from Savoie so we can make as good a Fondue as we had last month in the mountains. Gingerbread cookies and Soft Cakes from Alsace, to really get in the Christmas mood. Eggplant caviar and Pepperoncini from Nice (and up to Italy, let’s be honest, it’s the wider Nice we’re talking about here). And finally Brocciu Cheese, Figatelli smoked sausage and Coppa smoked ham from the beautiful Corsica, aka Island of Beauty (in the Mediterranean Sea, south of France). This is what in France we call regional Charcuterie (smoked deli meats).
When we got home with Coppa in hands and it was time to make dinner, I thought about a dish I haven’t got a chance to cook since I have started this blog and published my Cookbook: Eggplant Rolls with Cream Cheese and Bressaola. The idea here was to replace the thin Bressaola by slightly thicker slices of Coppa, and intend to obtain more smocky flavors thanks to the original taste of Coppa and 20 minutes baking in the oven. But then I opened my fridge only to find out I was out of Cream Cheese. No matter, let’s get inventive. No need to get my brain upside down though, I had French garlic and aromatic herbs spread cheese that I needed to use soon anyway – and didn’t know how – two problems solved at once! Just Perfect. Coppa’s flavor is as strong as Corsican people’s character. Add to it the marked taste of my improvised garlic and herbs spread cheese, and you get my Roasted Eggplant Rolls with Garlic Spread Cheese and Smoky Coppa Ham.
- 1 long Eggplant, sliced lengthways (no more than 3mm thick), and halved lengthways too.
- 100g of spread cheese of your choice, preferably with garlic and herbs aromas.
- thinly sliced Coppa ham from Corsica
- olive oil
- salt and pepper
- garlic powder
- dried basil flakes
- Green leaves and Balsamic vinegar to serve
- Preheat the oven at 180 ° C.
- Prepaee the Eggplant as required so that the slices will be easy to roll up in the final steps.
- Grease a pan with a tsp of olive oil that you can immediately wipe over the pan with a kitchen paper.
- Grill the eggplant ‘s slices on both sides. Let cool down for a few minutes.
- Gently spread cheese on one side of all eggplant’s slices.
- Add the Coppa and immediately roll the eggplant over.
- Put the rolls in a baking dish.
- Salt and pepper. Sprinkle with herbs and garlic powder, and drizzle with olive oil.
- Roast in the oven no more than 20 minutes.
- Serve on individual plates (5 to 10 Rolls per person) over green leaves and drizzle with Balsamic vinegar only.
Created and Written by Sophie Rebibo-Halimi, © 2015 All Rights Reserved.