Mallorcan Potato & Eggplant Casserole

My friend Melissa prepared the following recipe for this month's Chef Spotlight dinner where we highlighted Spanish chefs and cuisine. This was a delicious dish that used lots of in season vegetables, perfect for the summer!

Mallorcan Potato & Eggplant Casserole

recipe from
Ashbury's Aubergines

1 1/4 pound eggplant, in 1/4-inch crosswise slices
kosher salt
2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for brushing
freshly cracked black pepper
2 green bell peppers
1 red bell pepper
1/2 pound zucchini, in 1/4-inch crosswise slices
4 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1 cup canned stewed tomatoes, finely chopped
2 tablespoon parsley, minced
2 potatoes, peeled, cut in 1/8-inch slices

1. Sprinkle the eggplant slices on both sides with salt and place in a colander to drain for 1 hour. Dry between paper towels. Arrange the slices on a cookie tray, brush with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and bake at 400F about 10 minutes, turning once.

2. Place the green and red peppers in a roasting pan and bake at 5000F (2600C) for about 20 minutes, turning once. Cool, core, seed, and cut in 1/2-inch strips.

3. In a skillet, heat 1/2 the oil and sauté, the zucchini a minute, then add the peppers, salt, black pepper, and 1/4 of the minced garlic, and sauté, another minute. Remove to a warm platter.

4. Heat the remaining oil, sauté, the remaining garlic a few seconds, than add the paprika, tomatoes, and 1/2 the parsley. Simmer for 5 minutes.

5. Grease a microwave-safe dish and arrange the potato slices in layers (you can save on clean-up if the shallow casserole in which the vegetables will later bake - preferably oval, about 13 by 7 inches - can double as the one in which the potatoes will cook).

6. Drizzle each layer with olive oil and season with salt. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons** water over the potatoes, cover and microwave on high 8 minutes. Turn the potatoes, cover, and continue cooking in the microwave another 8 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender. Alternately, the sliced potatoes can be drizzled with oil (eliminate the water) and cooked in a greased roasting pan, tightly covered with foil, in a 350F oven for about 1 hour, or until tender.

7. Arrange the zucchini and peppers over the potatoes in a shallow casserole, then cover with the eggplant slices. Pour on the tomato sauce and bake at 400F about 15 minutes. Sprinkle with the remaining parsley and serve.

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