Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Sunday Supper on a Tuesday

I don't have an ounce of Italian blood in my veins, but to me Sunday supper always means a big Italian dinner. And sometimes it means a big Italian dinner on a Tuesday. I had an eggplant in the fridge, which inspired a big pot of tomato sauce, lots of mozzarella, and eggplant parmesan. I try to make my eggplant parm a little healthier, by baking the breaded eggplant instead of frying it. I think it tastes just as good, especially when layered with a delicious sauce and fresh mozzarella.  Tonight I made my sauce with a 28 oz can of crushed tomatoes, garlic, kalamata olives, and balsamic vinegar.  I serve the eggplant, always, with spaghetti.  Like any good Italian girl would. 

Eggplant Parmesan

1 large purple eggplant

All purpose flour

2 Eggs

Fresh bread crumbs

Fresh Mozzarella


Tomato Sauce (recipe of your preference)

-      Preheat oven to 400

-      Slice eggplant in ¼ to ½ inch rounds

-      Set up 3 shallow bowls for your battering station and spray a cookie sheet with cooking spray

-      Fill the 1st bowl with about ½ cup of flour seasoned with a little salt and pepper

-      Fill the 2nd bowl with 2 eggs beaten with a little water

-      Fill the 3rd bowl with about 1 cup of bread crumbs

-      Using your left hand, dip 1 eggplant round in the flour so both sides are coated, shaking off excess flour to keep the coating light

-      Using your right hand, dip the eggplant in the egg mixture to coat both sides

-      Using your left hand, dip the eggplant in the bread crumbs and coat both sides, pressing to make the breading stick (switching hands for the wet and dry ingredients helps keep hands from getting coated in batter)

-      Place eggplant on cookie sheet and continue battering all eggplant.  Lay all eggplant on cookie sheet in a single layer so they don’t overlap

-      Bake battered eggplant 25 – 30 minutes, turning half way through, until crisp and golden brown

-      Spray a casserole dish or glass baking dish with cooking spray

-      Spread a layer of tomato sauce over bottom of dish

-      Arrange a layer of eggplant over sauce, overlapping slices so they cover the bottom of the dish

-      Spread another layer of sauce over eggplant, then top with mozzarella cheese and grate some parmesan over that

-      Top cheese with another layer of eggplant, then sauce and cheese.  Continue layers until all eggplant is used, topping final layer with cheese.

-  Bake 15 – 20 minutes until sauce bubbles and cheese starts to brown.  Let cool a few minutes before serving.

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