Tomato Dolma with Roasted Eggplant
- 1 large eggplant
- 12 medium tomatoes (4-5 pounds)
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1¼ teaspoons salt, divided
- ½ teaspoon ground pepper, divided
- 1 pound lean ground beef
- 1 medium onion, grated
- 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 3 tablespoons bulgur, preferably fine
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- ¼ cup chopped fresh mint
- ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
- Preheat grill to high.
- Prick eggplant all over with a fork. Grill, turning occasionally, until charred and tender, 10 to 15 minutes. Transfer to a cutting board to cool, then peel. Place the eggplant and accumulated juices in large bowl and mash. Let cool for 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, preheat oven to 400°F. Coat a 9-by-13-inch baking dish with cooking spray.
- Cut the tops off tomatoes (reserve them). Scoop out the inner flesh with a spoon and place in a blender. Add oil, ¼ teaspoon each salt and pepper and puree until smooth. Spread the sauce in the baking dish. Lightly sprinkle the insides of the tomatoes with ¼ teaspoon salt.
- Add beef, onion, garlic, bulgur, cumin and the remaining ¾ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper to the eggplant; mix well. Stuff the tomatoes with the filling and replace the tops. Place in the prepared baking dish and cover with foil.
- Bake for 15 minutes. Remove the foil and continue baking until the tomatoes are browned and the liquid has thickened, 30 to 35 minutes more. Sprinkle with mint and parsley.