We’ve booked our camping weekend so we’re committed! Yikes I think the temp may drop a bit while we are up there so it’s gather up the sweater time. Rain or shine we are going up. It’s a good 3 hour drive to where we camp so we should arrive around 9:30pm Friday evening. I think a roaring campfire may be in order to keep us warm! A bobble hat, mitts and blanket may also be in order.
I popped up the trailer today which has been down for the winter, we’ll let it get freshened up and start to pack it for the trip. This trip is a first for us in that we are leaving both boys at home for the first time. Ethan is 19 so we feel comfortable having him look after Jordan. Teenagers simply don’t want to “hang out” with mum and dad any more lol. For my dinner tonight I baked a great eggplant and chickpea casserole.
- 1 large eggplant or 2 medium (1 pound), peeled if desired, cut in half lengthwise, then sliced about ½ inch thick
- Salt to taste
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 large onion, sliced thin across the grain
- 3 garlic cloves minced
- 1 (28-ounce) can chopped tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon of mixed Italian herbs
- 1 sprig basil
- 1 (15-ounce) can no salt added chickpeas, drained
- 3 tablespoons chopped parsley
- Heat the oven to 450 degrees. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil, and brush the foil with olive oil. Place the eggplant slices on the foil, sprinkle with salt and brush each slice lightly with oil. Place in the oven for 15 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove from the heat, and carefully fold the foil in half over the eggplant. Crimp the edges together, so that the eggplant is sealed inside the foil and will continue to steam and soften. Leave for at least 15 minutes.
- Meanwhile, make the tomato sauce. Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large, heavy skillet over medium heat. Add the onion. Cook, stirring often, until tender, about five minutes, and add the garlic and a generous pinch of salt. Cook, stirring, until the garlic is fragrant, about a minute. Add the tomatoes, tomato paste, Italian herbs, basil and salt to taste. Bring to a simmer, and simmer uncovered, stirring often, for 20 to 25 minutes, until the sauce is thick and fragrant. Add freshly ground pepper, then taste and adjust salt. Remove the basil sprig, and stir in the drained chickpeas.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Oil a 2-quart baking dish or gratin. Cover the bottom with thin layer of tomato sauce, and make a layer of half the eggplant. Spoon half the remaining sauce over the eggplant, and repeat the layers.
- Bake 30 minutes, until bubbling. Remove from the heat, and allow to cool for at least 10 to 15 minutes. This dish is usually served luke warm but you can eat it hot. Sprinkle on the parsley before serving.