3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh thyme
1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh rosemary
1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper
Ingredients for Eggplant roll ups:
2 eggplants, long enough to slice lengthwise and roll
1∕4 cup olive oil, as needed, plus more for the baking dish
1 cup shredded fontina
½ cup crescenza soft cheese
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped flat leafed parsley, plus more for serving
10 thin slices prosciutto ripped into big pieces
Salt and pepper
1 bag or 8 ounces of baby arugula for serving
1/4 cup lightly chopped pistachios
Pre-heat oven to 375°
Directions for the vinaigrette:
In a small bowl add the lemon juice, chopped thyme, and chopped rosemary. Whisk until well blended. Gradually whisk in the oil, it will thicken slightly. Season with salt and pepper. Cover and set aside.
Directions for the roll ups:
Using a thin sharp knife cut the top (stem) and the bottom off the eggplant. Then cut the eggplants lengthwise into slices about 1∕4 inch thick. Depending on the size of your eggplants you will get about 16 slices, less if your eggplants are smaller.
Pour olive oil in a large skillet, enough to coat bottom of the pan, and heat over medium high heat until it is hot but not smoking. In batches, add the eggplant and cook, turning once, until pliable and lightly browned. This should take about 3 – 4 minutes on each side. Add more oil to the skillet, as needed, being sure to heat it well before adding the eggplant. Eggplant soaks up the oil quickly if the pan is not hot. Try to just place enough oil into the pan to keep the eggplant from sticking. A non-stick pan skillet works best. Transfer eggplant slices to a paper-towel-lined baking sheet or platter. Let the eggplant cool.
I then take a paper towel doubled, place it on top of the eggplant and press lightly to remove the excess oil from the eggplant.
Mix the cheeses and parsley in a medium bowl with your hand. Roll it into “logs”, enough for the amount of slices of eggplant you have (they will fall apart a little, but don’t worry). Then lay a slice of eggplant down. I work on a cutting board and do 4 at a time. Place some prosciutto on the eggplant slice, and top with a cheese log. Roll up each eggplant slice to enclose the filling. Arrange the rolls, seam side down in a lightly oiled casserole dish. Season with salt and pepper.
Bake until the cheese begins to melt out of the rolls and the eggplant is tender, about 15 minutes. Then turn your oven to broil and broil the eggplant until they are lightly browned, approximately 5-6 minutes. Remove from the broiler and let cool slightly.
Toss the arugula with the lemon vinaigrette in a large bowl. Place the arugula salad on a plate and sprinkle some pistachios on top. Place two or three eggplant roll ups slightly on the salad. Drizzle about a teaspoon of the vinaigrette over the three rolls. Sprinkle with the parsley and serve.