Eat More Veg

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Eggplant Parmesan

This dinner was a genuine pain in the ass. It took entirely too long to construct and bake. (Keep in mind the kitchen is my favorite place to spend time, right behind being on my mountain bike or kayak.)  The worse part, after one bite myself and 2 of my kiddos realized that we are apparently allergic. Tingly lips and itchy roof. Yeah.

Most vegetarians tell me that this is one of their favorite dishes. I was really excited to knock this one out of the park but the for all the effort involved I can only say that it tasted pretty good. Not great, but pretty good. My friends who came as dinner guests messaged in the morning to tell me that it was ”excellent”  for breakfast the next day. I am thankful I sent the entire dish home with them.  They had nothing but praise as did my husband. My conclusion: I will NEVER make this again. 

If you are still reading this and you really want to try it out, allow me to share the recipe with you. I am a strong believer in one making up one’s own mind.  

Ingredients

  • 2 medium eggplant (about 2 1/4 pounds), cut into 1/2-inch-thick round slices
  • Kosher salt, as needed, plus 1 tablespoon
  • 5 cups fresh breadcrumbs
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Vegetable oil for frying
  • All-purpose flour for dredging
  • 6 large eggs, beaten
  • 2 tablespoons whole milk
  • Olive oil, as needed
  • 7 cups QUICK MARINARA SAUCE, recipe follows
  • 2/3 cup grated Parmesan, divided
  • 1 pound fresh mozzarella, thinly sliced

Directions

Arrange the eggplant slices on several baking sheets and sprinkle generously all over with kosher salt. Set aside to let the bitterjuices weep from the eggplant, about 1 hour.

Transfer the eggplant to a colander in the sink, and rinse well under cold running water. Transfer eggplant to a work surface and blot very dry with paper towels.

In a large bowl, whisk together the 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, breadcrumbsoreganothyme, and season with pepper.

Place the flour in a medium lipped plate or bowl. In another medium bowl, whisk the egg and milktogether. Dredge an eggplant slice in the flour, then dip it in the egg, and finally dredge it in the breadcrumb mixture. Shake off any excess breading and transfer the eggplant to a baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining eggplant.

In a large straight-sided skillet, pour the oil to a depth of 1/2 inch. Heat the oil over medium heat until it registers 400 degrees F on a deep frying thermometer. (The oil must be heated to 400 degrees F. so that the breaded eggplant, when added, will drop the temperature of the oil to the proper frying temperature of 375 degrees F.)

Working in small batches, fry the eggplant slices, turning once, until golden brown, about 3 minutes per batch. Using tongs, transfer to a paper towel-lined baking sheet and season with salt to taste. Repeat with the remaining eggplant.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Lightly brush a 15 x 10- x 2-inch-baking dish with olive oil. Cover the bottom of the baking dish with 1/3 of the marinara sauce and arrange half of the eggplant over the sauce. Cover the eggplant with another 1/3 of the sauce. Scatter half of the Parmesan and half of themozzarella over the sauced eggplant. Repeat with the remaining eggplant, sauce, Parmesan, and mozzarella. Bake until hot and just beginning to brown, about 30 minutes. Serve immediately.

Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Saute the onion and garlic, stirring, until lightly browned, about 3 minutes. Add the tomatoes and the herb sprigs and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer, covered, for 10 minutes.

Remove and discard the herb sprigs. Stir in the salt and season with pepper to taste. Use immediately, store covered in the refrigerator for up to 3 days, or freeze for up to 2 months.

Yield: about 3 1/2 cups

This is credited to www.foodnetwork.com

  1. eatmoreveg posted this