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Eggplant Cordon Bleu

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Renew your love affair with this variation on a classic entrée. We depend on nutrients from vegetables. The grains, eggplant and flax seeds in this dish give you an abundance of high-quality, easily absorbed carbohydrate protein, vitamins, minerals, fibre and healthy oils. Eggplant has a unique flavour and texture. It's low in calories and an excellent source of folic acid.

Renew your love affair with this variation on a classic entr? We depend on nutrients from vegetables. The grains, eggplant and flax seeds in this dish give you an abundance of high-quality, easily absorbed carbohydrate protein, vitamins, minerals, fibre and healthy oils. Eggplant has a unique flavour and texture. It's low in calories and an excellent source of folic acid.

1 large eggplant, finely sliced lengthwise
1/4 cup (60 ml) extra-virgin olive oil
8-10 slices Swiss Emmenthal cheese
1 cup (250 ml) green string beans
1 cup (250 ml) carrots
1 cup (250 ml) celery
2 eggs, beaten
1 cup (250 ml) corn meal
1 cup (250 ml) whole wheat bread crumbs
1/4 cup (60 ml) flax seeds
Herbamare, to taste

Tomato sauce:
1/2 cup (125 ml) extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, minced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp (5 ml) each of dried oregano, basil, tarragon, marjoram and chili flakes
1/2 cup (125 ml) water
2 cups (500 ml) ripe tomatoes, chopped
Sea salt
1 carrot, finely shredded

Preheat oven to 190°C (375°F).

Heat oil gently in a pan and fry eggplant slices until soft and lightly golden. Remove from heat and cool.

In the meantime, cut beans, carrots and celery three inches (eight centimeters) long and blanch them in a pot of boiling salted water for three minutes. Drain and rinse under cold water. In a bowl, combine corn meal, breadcrumbs, flax seeds and Herbamare.

Place each eggplant slice on a clean flat surface and season with Herbamare. Place cheese on top, then three to five pieces of bean, carrot or celery in the middle. Roll eggplant around the vegetables and secure with a toothpick. Place eggplant roll first in the eggwash, then in the cornmeal mixture. Fry gently in an ovenproof pan in oil until all sides are golden brown. Place the pan in the oven and bake for seven to 10 minutes.

To prepare the tomato sauce, heat oil in a pot and saut?nion, garlic, herbs and chili flakes until the onions are golden. Add water and tomatoes. Season with sea salt then add carrots and simmer for 30 minutes.

Place eggplant onto plates and serve with the tomato sauce and whole wheat pasta or brown rice.

Source: alive #219, January 2001

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