happy day pears. i have a delicious, vegetarian meal for you. in my attempt to make more creative dishes as a pescatarian, i began looking for ways to incorporate eggplant into my meals.
eggplant provides high levels of antioxidants and is a good source of vitamin k, thiamin and vitamin b. they are beautiful, fun and i love taking unusual things from the grocery store and trying my luck with them. my friend lisa (also a pescatarian) is a master of squash and despite our long distance apart (new york to arizona) i am going to force her to teach me her tricks of the trade.
for now, i wanted to start out basic with an eggplant parmesan.
first wash and slice the eggplants into circular pieces and place them in a collander, coated with a little coarse salt to soak up excess moisture. let drain for about 15 minutes. in the meantime, take your can of whole, peeled tomatoes, about 1/3 cup olive oil, basil, garlic and parsley and food process until smooth. i also added some red pepper flakes for a little spice!
in a small bowl, beat the eggs together. in a separate bowl, mix flour and breadcrumbs together. take your eggplant and make an assembly line for organized frying (yes, i fried them but they were delicious!).
dip each slice in the dry mixture, then the egg mixture and start frying with olive oil in pan over medium heat.
soak up excess oil on a paper towel. when all frying is done, start making your layers in a casserole dish. use a 13×9 inch casserole dish – i only had a 9×9 to work with and ended up wasting some eggplant. sad day.
first add in a spoon full of sauce, some eggplant, basil, then sliced mozzarella cheese and parmesan cheese.
pop into the oven at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until the cheese is melted and golden brown.
eggplant parmesan recipe
2 large eggplants
1 28oz can of whole, peeled tomatoes
1 cup basil
2 T parsley
1/2 cup italian breadcrumbs
1/2 cup flour
3-4 large eggs, beaten
1 1/2 lbs mozzarella, cut ¼ inch thick rounds
1 cup grated parmesan cheese
2 garlic cloves, minced and peeled
red pepper flakes
preheat oven to 350 degrees. slice your eggplants into circular shapes about ¼ inch thick. place in a colander and sprinkle with a little salt to remove excess water. place on a paper towel to remove any excess moisture. while the eggplant is draining, take the tomatoes, garlic, and 1/3 cup olive oil and combine in a food processor until smooth. season with salt, pepper, parsley and red pepper flakes. in a small bowl, mix the flour and breadcrumbs together and in a separate bowl, beat 4 eggs together. dip each slice in the flour bowl, then egg mixture and place in frying pan on medium heat with about 1 inch of olive oil until golden brown. place on a plate with a paper towel to soak up excess oil. in a 9×13 casserole dish, place about 1 cup of the sauce, then top with some eggplant, mozzarella, basil and parmesan. repeat layering until the casserole dish is full. add remaining cheese and parmesan on top. bake for about 30 minutes or until cheese is melted and golden brown. the sauce should be bubbling. allow up to 10 minutes to cool. serves 8.