NOTHING makes me happier than when someone tells me they made one of my recipes and it was a total success. I do a little happy dance (usually in my head…) But when my sister-in-law Dee said: “I made your eggplant parmesan and it was so delicious. But Sandy was really mad.” WHAT? WHY? “Because you fry your eggplant and that’s fattening…but she loved it and came back for more.” 😦 Sad sad Isabelle….
I need to make this up. I understand that fried eggplant is not the healthiest but aren’t we doing everything in moderation? Aren’t we allowed to treat ourselves now and then? OK, so in order to save my reputation as an exercise/health nut, I decided to make a new eggplant recipe but this one is baked. BONUS: you can use these baked eggplants in my original recipe for Eggplant Parmesan (please make sure you check your quantities you will need more). See I am a good listener!
1 large eggplant
kosher salt (or regular if that is all you have)
1 cup flour seasoned with salt and pepper
1 cup Italian style bread crumbs
1 14-ounce can of your favorite marinara sauce (or 1 jar or homemade…whatever you prefer)
1 cup fresh basil chopped or shredded into small pieces
1 pound of whole fresh mozzarella
Country Bread sliced and toasted
Parmesan cheese (for serving)
Crushed red pepper flakes (for serving)
First slice your eggplant in about 1/2-inch thick slices. Put them in a large bowl and salt each slice with your kosher salt, on both sides. You will need about 1/2 teaspoon per slice. Let this rest at room temperature for 30 minutes. When ready, rinse your eggplant well and dry your eggplant completely. I put mine on paper towels to remove all of the water. This is an important step that I talked about in my eggplant post. Trust me it does make a difference.
Preheat your oven to 425F
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a Silpat. Set aside.
Second, make a little assembly line: in 3 shallow bowls (I used pie plates) have your flour, eggs (whisked) and bread crumbs. Working in batches, dip each eggplant slice in the flour, eggs and then breadcrumbs. Lay each slice on your prepared baking sheet. Drizzle with a little olive oil. (I did about 2 tablespoons) Bake in your preheated oven for 15-20 minutes.
Note: very crispy and tasty, smells delicious!
While your eggplant slices are baking, prepare your sauce if making fresh or heat up your favorite marinara sauce.
Slice and toast your bread. Lay on on a baking sheet for assembly. For added flavor I like to take a garlic clove sliced in half and rub in on the bread. Could be nothing…but I like the added flavor.
To assemble; spoon 2-3 heaping tablespoons of sauce on the bottom of your bread. Top with 2-3 slices of eggplant (depending on size of bread). Add another 2-3 tablespoons of sauce and top with 2-3 slices of mozzarella. Put in your (still) preheated oven for 5 minutes. Turn your broiler on and cook for another 3-5 minutes or until golden brown. Keep an eye on it so you don’t burn the cheese.
Serve with fresh parmesan cheese and shredded basil.
Printer friendly: Baked Eggplant Sandwiches
Peace and moderation,
Printer Friendly: Eggplant Parmesan
My recipe is also on Coupon Cookin’: Tasty Traditions