Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Rich Savory Eggplant Parmesan

Rich Savory Eggplant Parmesan

For The Eggplant:

2 Medium Eggplants, or 4 Small

6 Tablespoons Coarse Salt

2 Tablespoons Olive Oil

To Assemble:

1 Ball Fresh Mozzarella Cheese (Not Buffalo) (About 6 to 8 Ounces)

1 1/2 Cups Seasoned Homemade Bread Crumbs

3/4 Cup Grated Parmesan Cheese

2 to 3 Tablespoons Olive Oil

For The Sauce:

8 Ripe Plum Tomatoes

2 Cloves Garlic, Peeled And Minced

2 Tablespoons Olive Oil

Salt & Pepper

Red Pepper Flakes

2 Tablespoons Finely Chopped Fresh Basil

Slice the eggplants lengthwise into 1/3 to 1/2 inch slices. Place a few slices in a colander and sprinkle with a little salt. Continue to slice the eggplants and place them in the strainer with salt. Place a heavy plate that just covers the eggplant on top. Let eggplant drain in the sink for about 45 minutes to an hour. Rinse with cool water, and pat eggplant dry.

While the eggplant is being expelled of any bitterness, begin the sauce. To prepare the tomatoes, cut a piece off the core end of the tomato. Squeeze the tomato gently over the sink to remove as many of the seeds and juice as possible. Don’t worry if you do not remove all of them. Chop the tomatoes into 1/2 inch dices. Heat the olive oil in a heavy saucepan. Add garlic and cook an additional minute. Next add the chopped tomatoes, salt pepper, and red pepper flakes to the pan. Cook over low heat until the sauce thickens, about 15 or so minutes. Add the fresh chopped basil and stir well. Set to the side

Turn the broiler in the oven on medium, and place the eggplant slices flat on the lightly greased baking sheet. Very lightly brush the top of the eggplants with olive oil and then broil until lightly browned. Turn the eggplant over, and brown the other side of it. Continue this until all of the eggplant slices are golden browned and are soft.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. F. get a large baking pan, lightly grease the bottom of it. Place a layer of the eggplant slices next to each other without touching. Spoon a little sauce onto each eggplant slice, and then shave the mozzarella cheese to fit each bottom slice. Choose another slice of eggplant equal in size to fit the bottom one, and cover each with this second slice.

Mix the grated parmesan cheese with the olive oil and bread crumbs. Sprinkle crumbs over the eggplant slices. Cover the pan with foil, and bake eggplant for 20 minutes. Remove the foil and bake an additional 10 to 15 minutes or until the cheese and bread crumb topping golden brown. Place each eggplant on individual plates and spoon sauce on top. Serve warm.

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