1 (12 ounce) bag Cut 'N Clean Greens Beet Greens
1 eggplant (about 1 1/4 pounds), peeled and cut horizontally into 1/2-inch slices
3-4 homegrown tomatoes, seeded and sliced (enough to cover eggplant)
1 large onion, sliced and separated into rings
1/4 cup butter, melted (divided use)
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon dried basil (or 1 tablespoon fresh basil, chopped)
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 (8 ounce) bag shredded mozzarella cheese
3/4-1 cup cracker crumbs (or a mix of cracker and crushed croutons or seasoned dressing crumbs, or homemade bread crumbs)
3-4 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese
3 tablespoons toasted pine nuts
Heat oven to 450 degrees. Spray a 9 by 13 inch metal baking pan with non-stick spray and set aside. (If using a glass baking pan, lower heat to 425 degrees.)
Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add half the beet greens straight from the bag to the hot skillet, and stir and turn for a total of 3 minutes, until they are wilted. Add 1-2 tablespoons of water during cooking time if you think they are dry and sticking to the pan. Set aside. (Save remaining uncooked beet greens for another use, or wilt them all and save whatever portion you don’t use in the eggplant dish for another use.)
Arrange eggplant slices in bottom of pan and sprinkle lightly with salt. Drain beet greens if they are watery, and top eggplant with wilted beet greens and sprinkle with salt. Top with tomato and onion slices and sprinkle lightly with salt. Drizzle 2 tablespoons melted butter (save rest for use in topping) and 3 tablespoons olive oil over the entire casserole. Sprinkle with basil and garlic. Cover pan with foil and bake for 25 minutes.
Remove from oven and sprinkle top with mozzarella cheese. Toss crumbs with remaining 2 tablespoons melted butter and sprinkle over casserole. Top with Parmesan cheese and bake, uncovered, for 10 more minutes.
Remove from oven, sprinkle with pine nuts, and allow to cool for 5 minutes before cutting to serve.
Reheats well as leftovers.
The absolute best time to make it is during the summer and fall months, with good, fresh eggplant and homegrown or farmer’s market tomatoes.
How do you make homemade bread crumbs? Start with good quality artisan bread and allow it to go stale. (You can speed up the process by toasting it in the oven or a toaster.) Cool and break up pieces into a blender; whirl until bread turns to crumbs.