Next, I greased a pie pan with Crisco then added the broccoli. Based on my last experience, already I knew the dish wouldn't fit in the oven but it was all I had to work with so I rolled with it.
The sauce was very quick and easy however there were many steps involved and they happened very quickly so I was a little nervous about this part. I started by melting the butter in a saucepan. Next I added the chopped garlic and chili flakes (I was also supposed to add a bay leaf but I didn't have any so I skipped that). I let this cook for about a minute then added the flour and stirred for another minute before slowly stirring in the milk. I waited a few minutes for this to come to a boil before turning off the heat and stirring in the cheese. After adding a little salt and pepper it was ready to be poured on the broccoli then the whole dish went in the oven.
Anyway, so the recipe called for one large eggplant. I wasn't really sure what constitutes as "large" in eggplant terms but the only size the store seemed to have was ginormous! I mean like the bottom was almost the size of a basketball! Since that was all they had, that's what I got although I'm pretty sure the cost of the meal could be a LITTLE cheaper if I had used a smaller eggplant.
I cut the eggplant into cubes until my red bowl was full but still had quite a bit leftover. I wasn't sure what to do with it and didn't want to it to go to waste so I put it in a bag in the fridge to see if it would keep until I figured out something to do with it.
Like the recipe says, I heated some olive oil in a pan then added the eggplant and salt and let this cook for about 5 minutes. Next I stirred in the garlic and chili flakes then through in the tomatoes and let it cook for another 20 minutes.
Not sure exactly how it was supposed to turn out but it never really got to the point of resembling a "sauce" in my opinion. Just cooked eggplant and tomato. I'm thinking I probably should have cooked it for a bit longer and used a little less eggplant. Idk, I seem to have a bit of trouble cooking tomatoes properly. I think the extra water in them throws me off. But honestly, that was the least of my problems with this recipe.
But on the bright side, the Broccoli Cheese turned out awesome!
Overall it didn't turn out THAT bad. With enough salt and cheese, I can make almost anything taste decent. Plus we had some amazing Broccoli and Cheese to go with it. Pair that with some MacGyver on Netflix and it turned out to be a pretty good night :)
The pasta came out to be $5.72 total, or $2.86 per serving but again this number is a bit inflated due to the fact that I cooked twice as much pasta as necessary and used a gargantuan eggplant. Even so, that's still not bad compared to what we would've paid going out so I'd call it a win :)