Presvytera Vassi Makris Haros is a graduate of the University of Cincinnati's College of Design, Art, Architecture & Planning and Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology. She is the owner, designer and photographer of V’s Cardbox, In Service and Love. a greeting card company featuring cards with an Orthodox voice. She strongly feels that experiencing the Orthodox Faith through the church’s cyclical calendar of feasts and fasts is a gift that is too often overlooked.
Looking for a substantial meal for Saturday of Lazarus or Palm Sunday? This is definitely “Company Worthy.”
Slice 2 pounds of eggplants into ¼ inch rings; lengthwise works as well. Salt them and let them sit for 20 minutes to remove bitterness, then rinse.
Pat dry, and fry in hot oil. Set on a paper towel and set aside.
Sauté one finely chopped onion until soft. Add 2 packages of mushrooms, finely chopped. I used one package of button and one package of portabella mushrooms. Sauté with onions until moisture is absorbed.
Add 1 ½ c tomato puree, a cinnamon stick, a bay leaf, salt, and pepper. Simmer for a few minutes.
Slice 2 large russet potatoes into ¼ inch discs and fry until light golden brown. Set on paper towel and set aside.
Pour ½ c of the sauce in a baking dish. Layer the potato slices.
Pour ½ of remaining sauce. Layer cooked eggplant. Pour remaining sauce. Set baking dish aside to make “cream” sauce.
Boil 5c water in a large saucepan and remove from heat. Stir in 3/4c instant potato flakes until dissolved, and set aside.
Heat ½ c oil in medium saucepan. Stir in ¾ c flour and cook while stirring until it turns a golden color. Lower heat and slowly stir in potato water, stirring constantly to avoid lumps. Season with salt, pepper,and nutmeg.
Pour over eggplant in baking dish.
Cook at 350 degrees for 1 hour or until top is golden. Let cool before serving.