Karnıyarık (Stuffed Eggplant) was one of the first Turkish dishes I mastered (after Cacık), mainly because it is one of my husband's favorite foods. As I've mentioned before, I never really ate eggplant before I met my hubby, but this dish will have you begging for more! There are a few more steps than most of my recipes, but trust me when I say it's WORTH it! Enjoy! | www.MommyHiker.com
To prepare your eggplant, cut off the top right at the base of its cap, cut off a sliver at the very bottom, then peel the skin off in quarters, length-wise, leaving four strips of skin all the way around.
Submerge eggplant in very salty water and let them sit for at least 10 minutes.
While the eggplants are soaking, chop your green onions, garlic, parsley and half of the tomato (reserve the other half of the tomato. you'll use that later.)
In a pan, saute the onions for a minute, then add the garlic for a minute.
Add the ground beef to the pan and brown, making sure to break up the beef into fairly small pieces.
Add the chopped tomato and parsley and saute for another 5 minutes. Don't saute on too high of a heat. You want the ground beef mixture to be juicy, not dry.
In a deep pot pour your 2 cups of olive oil and let it get hot.
Meanwhile, remove your eggplant from the salt bath and pat dry with a paper towel.
When the oil is hot (check by dipping the end of the eggplant in the oil. If it bubbles up vigorously, it's ready.), gently place eggplant into oil.
Rotate eggplant a quarter turn every 3 minutes.
When they are done, place them in a baking dish.
Choose a place on each eggplant, between strips of skin and make a cut down the middle, making sure not to cut all the way through end to end.
Leave about half an inch on each end. Split each eggplant open, like you would a baked potato and fill with the ground beef mixture.
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
Thinly slice the remain half of tomato and place a slice on top of each stuffed eggplant.
Mix 2 tablespoons of tomato paste in 1 cup of water (and pour in any remaining juice you may have in the pan from the ground beef mixture) and slowly pour over each eggplant, then pours the rest into the baking dish.