I love eggplant parm, but I think it's too heavy to eat in the summer. And I LOVE grilled eggplant. So, I decided to make a simple and light grilled parm-like eggplant.
It's a simple grilled eggplant, topped with grilled tomatoes and mozzarella. Ideally you would use roasted tomatoes, but to keep things simple I just used a lightly grilled tomato. You could also use a sauce for the tomato part.
Step 1: Gather Your Ingredients
- Olive Oil
Pay no mind to the chicken in the picture - I used it in my meal but not in this dish, so I don't know why I put it in the picture.
Step 2: Mix Up Your Basting Oil
You will be basting your eggplant and tomatoes with olive oil. You can use plain olive oil if you want, but it'll be more flavorful with herbs mixed in. If you're gonna mix things in, do it now so the flavors can mingle awhile while you prep the rest of the ingredients.
I had some basil left over from the farmer's market, so I used that and some minced garlic. This would also be good with your favorite blend of Italian seasoning.
Step 3: Prep Your Eggplant
Cut the ends off of your eggplant and slice it the long way. Make sure that you cut all of the slices the same thickness so that they all cook evenly. Mine are about 1/4" thick, and I wish I had a mandolin slicer so they'd be perfectly even.
I think it would make a nicer presentation cut into rounds, so you can do that if you want, but it's easier to grill when it's sliced the long way
Eggplant (especially large ones like this one) can be bitter, so to prevent that you need to draw out the juices. Place your eggplant slices on paper towels and salt them generously on both sides. Then, place another layer or two of paper towel on top. Let them sit, and if the paper towels are too saturated, switch them out.
Step 4: Slice Your Mozzarella
Slice your mozzarella into thin peices (about 1/8" of an inch thick)
Step 5: Slice Your Tomato
If you are using a simple grilled tomato like I did, slice it into hearty pieces. I had two tomatoes, and cut them into 5 big slices with a little bit extra.
If you are feeling more ambitious of having company over I would deffinately reccomend roasting your tomatoes using Canida's instructable. It would also work well with a fresh tomato sauce.
Step 6: Have a Little Appetizer
You've got extra tomato, plenty of sliced mozzarella, and some flavored olive oil. Make yourself a little appetizer!
Step 7: Fire Up Your Grill
Preheat your grill.
Add some salt and pepper to your tomatoes, and some pepper to your eggplant (it's already salted). Baste one side with oil.
Put your veggies oil side down on the grill and cook for three minutes with the cover on.
Note: you only see eggplant in the photo of this step, but I should have cooked my tomato longer so I would put it on at the same time as the eggplant in the future.
Step 8: Baste and Flip
Baste the other side of the veggies and flip them over, then cook them another 3 minutes.
Feel free to re-baste if you wish
Step 9: Grill Your Tomatoes
When I flipped the eggplant I added my tomatoes to the grill. I cooked them 1 1/2 minutes on each side, but I think that I should have cooked it a little longer.
Step 10: Make Your Stacks
Flip the eggplant over again. Place the tomato on top (or sauce if you prefer), and the mozzarella on top of that. Cook it for 1-2 minutes with the cheese to get a little melty.
Step 11: Voila!
Your eggplant is ready to serve! I served this as a side dish with grilled chicken, but it would also be delicious with a lightly sauced pasta or a smaller grain like couscous. It would also be yummy in a sandwich.