Intro: Eggplant Parmesan
Eggplant parmesan is a delightfully delicious vegetarian dish. Not only is great tasting, but it is easy to make. And who doesn't love Italian food? I mean, really, red sauce, cheese and fried eggplant - how can you go wrong? This is, after all, one of my favorite dishes of all time. I hope that you enjoy it as much as I do.
Step 1: Ingredients
You will need:
A large eggplant
Large block of mozzarella cheese
Romano pecorino (parmesan) cheese
1/4 cup milk
Italian style bread crumbs
A couple of plates
Oven-safe glass dish
Step 2: Cut the Eggplant
Slice the eggplant into slices between 1/2" and 3/4" thick.
Step 3: Salt It
Sprinkle salt onto your hands and lightly rub it into the surface of the eggplant slices.
Let them sit for at least thirty minutes in a colander.
This will help pull out the excess water from the eggplant and cut the acidity.
Step 4: Make Batter
Make the egg batter by mixing together an egg, 1/4 cup of milk, a few sprinkles of garlic powder and a generous amount of parsley flakes.
If after you mix it well, there does not appear to be any parsley flakes floating atop the surface, sprinkle some more into the mix.
Step 5: Bread Crumbs
I swear by Progresso Italian-style bread crumbs.
In other projects in which I have used these, people have suggested making your own breadcrumbs with slightly stale bread and a little bit of romano pecorino (parmesan) cheese. Feel free to give this a try.
Step 6: Batter Up
Battering the eggplant is actually quite easy.
All you need to do is pick up an eggplant slice and then dunk it into the egg mixture until all sides are covered.
Let the excess batter drip off the eggplant and then dredge it through the bread crumbs until it is completely covered in crumbs. This should happen relatively quickly and not take much work.
Place the breaded eggplants in a pile on a plate.
Step 7: Prepare for Frying
Fill your frying pan with enough oil that when you place the eggplant in, it will be half-submerged.
Heat the oil on a medium to high flame.
Step 8: Fry It
Carefully place the eggplant into the frying pan with a fork.
Let it cook for 2-3 minutes and then flip all the slices over so that the other sides could cook for the same amount of time.
Repeat flipping the eggplant over until it is evenly brown on each side. If you can stick a fork through without resistance and both sides are browned, it's done.
Place the fried eggplant on a clean plate with a paper towel on it to absorb the oil. Place another paper towel over top to absorb the oil on both sides.
(tip: Later, should you be inclined, you can cook off even more of the oil later by baking it in the preheated oven for 2-3 minute before you add the sauce and cheese)
Step 9: Cut the Cheese
Slice your block of mozzarella cheese into long slices that are about 1/4" thick.
(tip: I advise against using fresh mozzarella balls as they tend to be too watery and typically not salty enough to cut the sweetness of the sauce.)
Step 10: Saucy
Pour your sauce into the pan such that the eggplant will be half-submerged.
Flip the eggplant over a few times until it is fully covered in sauce.
Step 11: Put It All Together
Sprinkle on romano pecorino (parmesan) cheese .
Distributed your pre-sliced mozzarella cheese over top of the eggplant slices.
Step 12: Bake
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees and then back the eggplant until the pieces of cheese start to melt together and bubble.
This should take about 5-10 minutes to happens. Once it does, take it out and serve.