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Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Eggplant Parmesan

Eggplant Parmesan
  • 2 lbs. eggplant
  • kosher salt
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup flour
  • 2 cups Italian breadcrumbs
  • peanut oil
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 1 quart home canned tomatoes, or 16 oz. crushed tomatoes and 16. oz. chopped tomatoes
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 10 oz. Mozzarella cheese
  • 3 Tbsp. chopped fresh basil
Peel eggplant and slice into ½ inch thick slices.  Salt generously with kosher salt and drain for at least 1 hour.
Make the sauce while the eggplant is draining.  Chop garlic.  Heat pan with ¼ cup olive oil over medium high heat.  Add garlic and cook until fragrant about 1 minute.  Add tomatoes and season with salt and pepper to taste. Simmer for 30 minutes to reduce.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Wash eggplant and dry thoroughly in a clean towel or paper towels.  In three plates put flour seasoned with salt and pepper, eggs whisked, and Italian breadcrumbs.  Dip the sliced eggplants first into the flour, then eggs, then breadcrumbs.  Fry eggplant in smoking peanut oil until golden brown on both sides and drain on a paper towel.
In a 9 x 13 baking dish, spread a thin layer of sauce.  Layer eggplant, sauce, chopped fresh basil and mozzarella until all the ingredients have been used.
Bake in a 400 degree oven for 20 minutes.
Serves 6
Click over to Tasty Kitchen for my printable recipe. Here’s how to make my Eggplant Parmesan:
1.  Peel your eggplant using a sharp potato peeler (I love my OXO potato peeler!  I am left handed and most potato peelers only work right handed.  But not OXO, it’s great for left or right and it is sharp enough to handle eggplant.)  You can also use a pairing knife.
2.  Slice your eggplant into 1/2 inch slices.
3.  Generously salt each slice with kosher salt (table salt will work too) on both sides and place on a wire rack for about an hour.  This will draw out moisture (and any bitterness) from the eggplant.  I place a cookie sheet under the rack to catch any drippings.
4.  To make the sauce, chop your 4 cloves of garlic.  Heat pan over medium high heat.  Add 1/4 cup olive oil.  Add garlic and stir until fragrant, about 1 minute.  Add 1 quart of home bottled tomatoes and they are amazing!  You can also used store bought tomatoes.  Use one 16 oz. crushed tomato and one 16 oz. chopped tomato.  I have also made this dish using 2 pounds fresh Roma tomatoes from my garden, I place the tomatoes in boiling water for about 1 minute, slip the skins and rough chop.
5.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.  Simmer for  30 minutes to reduce.  This will also break down the big chunks of tomato.  Here’s a quick tip.  If my sauce tastes a little too acidic, I throw in a small pat of butter and stir it in.  This works really well to reduce the acidity.
6.  Grate the mozzarella cheese and set aside.
7. After an hour, rinse the salt from the eggplant and dry on a clean kitchen towel or paper towels.
8.  In three plates place flour seasoned with salt and pepper, whisked eggs and Italian breadcrumbs.  First dredge the eggplant in flour mixture.  Shake it to remove excess.
9. Dredge in eggs.
10. Coat with breadcrumbs.
11.  Fry eggplants in smoking peanut oil until golden brown on both sides, and drain on a paper towel.
12.  Spread a small amount of sauce on the bottom of your pan.  Layer eggplant, sauce, chopped basil and cheese until all the ingredients have been used.
13. Cook in a 400 degree oven for 20 minutes.
I love this meal served with a simple Italian salad and breadsticks or garlic bread.  I hope you love this as much as I do.

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