Provencal Vegetable Stew



  1. Peel eggplant.
  2. Cut eggplant into 3/4-inch pieces (you should have 3 cups).
  3. In a slow cooker, combine all ingredients except vinegar, bread, oil and cheese.
  4. Cover and cook on low for 8 to 10 hours or on high for 4 to 5 hours.
  5. Stir in basil (if using), and balsamic vinegar.
  6. For croutons, preheat oven to 400 F.
  7. Lightly brush bread slices with olive oil.
  8. Sprinkle with 1 tablespoon of the cheese.
  9. Place bread slices on baking sheet.
  10. Bake for 6 to 8 minutes.
  11. Top each serving with croutons and sprinkle with remaining cheese.