Monday, February 28, 2011


I've never cooked with eggplant but I will try to do so every single week from now on.  It's quite sad that I've neglected this beautiful purple treat.

Last night, I finally bought my new toys that will launch me further into the raw food world: a dehydrator and food processor.  About 80% of the recipes that I found online and wanted to try require either one or both of these.

Remember that Eggplant Ravioli I wanted to make last week? Well, that would be one of those recipes that required both of those tools.  I woke up early so I could start on this day-long recipe (I had my first day off in what feels like forever).  I prepped everything in the morning, started sweating and marinating the eggplant.  While that was happening I got my hair cut.  Then I came back and stuffed the "shells" and put the raviolis in the dehydrator. Then I headed to the studio to throw some pots. I was able to bring home a bunch of the ones that got fired this week! That's always super exciting.  Here's one (of many) that I brought home today and immediately used for my new basil plant:

It's a very dark rust, almost brown color.
The lighting in my kitchen is terrible. My apologies.

I swear I will have a ceramics studio when we get a house. It needs to happen.  Anywho.

Here's how the ravioli looked about half way through the dehydrating session:

And when it was finished, pre-sauce on top:
I added strips of celery underneath as a mock pasta, plus it was yummy to snack on after taking a bite out of these slightly spicy raviolis.
The finished product:

That is NOT a tomato sauce. It's red pepper & basil! Mmmmm

This was surprisingly good. I was slightly nervous, but after Mike took the first bite he looked over at me, paused, and said "Wow. This is really, really good".  Yay for approving husbands!!

Here's my slightly different version of the recipe posted by Small Footprint Family.  I give them all the credit, but I adapted a few things based on what foods I actually had in the house.  Keep in mind, this is NOT a quick meal.  It takes some patience. Do the work in the morning, throw in the dehydrator and go to work. It'll be done when you get home!

  • 1 small globe eggplant, peeled
  • sea salt for sweating
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 3 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • 1 tsp. garlic, minced
  • 1 cup walnuts (buy the pre-chopped ones from the baking much cheaper!!)
  • 2 Tbsp. parsley chopped
  • 1 tsp. oregano
  • 1 tsp. thyme
    • I didn't have the above  3 in my cabinet, so I threw in about 2 1/2 Tablespoons of Italian Seasoning.
  • 1/4 tsp. cayenne
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  •  Liquify 1 tsp. sea salt 
  • 3 Tbsp. raw apple cider vinegar (This will smell like it's too much at first, and that's what had me worried about this recipe, but when it's done & out of the dehydrator you don't notice it AT ALL)
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  1. Peel the eggplant and slice into 1/8″ thick rounds on a mandoline—the top half has less seeds, but is usually smaller in diameter—about 1 inch down from the top is the sweet spot. You’ll need about 16 pieces at the eggplant, but a couple extra pieces for back-up isn’t a bad idea. This will only use about 2-3 inches of the eggplant, so you might want to think about a second recipe and using it in the next day or so. **I didn't have a mandoline, so I just carefully sliced 1/8" rounds.
  2. Salt the eggplant for about 30 minutes to “sweat.” Rinse the salt off of the eggplant, pat dry, and place it in a large non-reactive, glass dish in a single layer if possible (overlapping slightly is fine).
  3. Whisk together the oil, lemon juice, garlic and salt and pour over the eggplant. It’s a good idea to put a smaller non-reactive dish on top to weigh it down slightly.
  4. Marinate for 1 hour, flipping the eggplant over half way through.
  5. While the eggplant is marinating, add all of the filling ingredients into a food processor, and pulse until the walnuts have broken down into very small pieces and have begun to stick together.
  6. Check the seasoning and adjust to taste.
  7. Remove the eggplant slices and pat dry.
  8. Lay an eggplant round in front of you and add about 1-2 tsp. of the filling in the center, being careful to not overfill. Fold the top of the eggplant over the filling and press down firmly on the edges to seal the ravioli.
  9. Place the ravioli on a dehydrator tray and process about 6-7 hours, flipping about halfway through. The edges should be crisp, but the filling moist inside.
  10. Top with Red Pepper Sauce below.
Red Pepper SauceMakes 2 cups
  • 1 red bell pepper, roughly chopped
  • 2/3 cup basil, tightly packed
  • 2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup pure water
  • 1 packet of Stevia (it's an all natural sugar substitute, you can just use a teaspoon or 2 of real sugar)
  1. Put all the ingredients in a food processor and blend until smooth and well combined.
  2. Spoon over your eggplant ravioli and enjoy!
I do not heat up the sauce or ravioli. We enjoyed eating it at room temperature. Shred some celery or carrots first to use as a "pasta" layer underneath your ravioli. It's extra yummy that way.

I hope some of you are able to try out these recipes. They look scary & different, but trust me, it's amazing that we are still able to have tasty, REALLY filling (trust me, my pants are unbuttoned right now due to the amount of food I ate. TMI?) food, and yet, it is 100% completely natural and raw. I just really don't understand how this way of eating isn't more popular. Yes, it takes a 2 week adjustment period to get away from processed foods and to start truly liking vegetables, but once you get past the withdraw, it's incredible the fun things I can make & enjoy without the guilt of processed grossness.

Getting close to skinny jeans!

P.S. Weigh in is in 2 days!!!!

1 comment:

  1. Good job! Looks amazing!
    We will have to have some healthy double dates ASAP!
    > What about a picture of the hair cut!?