Crispy eggplant rounds topped with a creamy Cajun white wine seafood sauce laced with mushrooms, onions and bell peppers, this lightened up version of the popular Louisiana dish is to die for. Named after Lake Pontchartrain, the lake in New Orleans, this dish is sure to become a favorite for all seafood and/or eggplant lovers.
It’s almost time for Mardi Gras and I’m not in New Orleans, but I’m totally ready to enjoy some delicious Creole cuisine to celebrate! My sister and I visited New Orleans in November and fell in love with the amazing seafood we enjoyed while we were there. One dish I saw on a few menus that totally intrigued me, but just didn’t have time to try was Eggplant Pontchartrain. I looked up recipes for it on the way home and have seriously had a tab open on my phone for months just to remind me to make this because I really, really, really wanted to try it.
When I noticed last week that Mardi Gras was coming up, my mind turned to that fascinating seafood dish again. But then I went out of town all weekend for my nephew’s hockey tournament … and finding good healthy food proved difficult on that trip. On my drive home, I was considering what to make for myself upon arrival (because I knew I’d be starving … and I couldn’t wait to taste some healthy home cooking again) and I just happened to recall that I had some crispy frozen breaded eggplant rounds in my freezer from last summer that I want to use up soon. That meant this dish would come together in just a few minutes because all I had to do is make the sauce … Yes! Score!
- 2 cups crushed Rice Chex cereal
- 1/2 cup cornmeal
- 1/2 teaspoon granulated garlic
- 1 cup grated sharp cheese (I used a mix of Gruyere and Asiago, but Parmesan or Romano would also be wonderful)
- 2 teaspoons Red Robin Seasoning
- 1 Tablespoon finely chopped fresh herbs (I used a mix of basil, rosemary & tarragon)
- 1 medium eggplant, peeled & sliced into 1/4-inch slices
- 3 eggs
- 2 Tablespoons avocado oil (or other high-temperature cooking oil)
- 1 Tablespoon butter
- 1 medium onion, peeled & chopped (about 1 cup)
- 2 - 4 cloves garlic, peeled & chopped
- 1 bell pepper or several small mini peppers, cored & chopped (about 1 cup)
- 8 oz. mushrooms, sliced
- 1/4 cup wine
- 1 teaspoon Creole seasoning (more or less to taste ... I used Tony Chachere's)
- 1 oz. Greek cream cheese (or Neufchatel)
- 1 6-oz. can crab meat, drained (or fresh crab or crawfish)
- About 12 medium deveined shrimp (I used frozen precooked shrimp from Costco)
- Make the eggplant according to the instructions for my Eggplant Parmesan (recipe here).
- While the eggplant is baking, make the sauce. In a medium frying pan over medium heat, melt the butter, then add the onion and garlic and saute until the onion is soft and translucent. Add in the peppers and mushrooms. Cover and cook for a few minutes, then remove the cover and stir in the wine, a bit at a time. Cook for a while until the mushrooms are tender, then add the seasoning and then the cream cheese a bit at a time and stir until the cream cheese is nicely melted and incorporated into the sauce. Stir in the crab meat and shrimp and cook just until hot (or until the shrimp turns pink).
- To serve: place several eggplant rounds on each plate and top with sauce. Garnish with fresh parsley or oregano leaves. Enjoy!
Make-ahead tip: make the eggplant rounds ahead and freeze them on flat baking sheets in the freezer. Once frozen, place the rounds in bags. Then you have crispy eggplant just waiting for you whenever you want! Just a quick 5 - 10 minutes in the oven at 450 F. and your eggplant is ready.
RECIPE SOURCE: http://www.sumptuousspoonfuls.com/
© Copyright 2017, Sumptuous Spoonfuls. All images & content are copyright protected. I love it when you share, but please do not use my images on your own site/page without prior permission. If you want to publish any of my images, please ask first. Sharing, pinning, and tweeting is always appreciated as long as the shares and pins link back to here for the recipe. If you want to republish this recipe as your own, please re-write the recipe in your own words or link back to this post for the recipe.