A very good basic recipe for the Italian classic, eggplant Parmigiano.
4 medium eggplants
Kosher or sea salt and freshly ground pepper
1 cup all-purpose flour
Vegetable oil for frying
1 (14-ounce) can Italian peeled plum tomatoes, drained and chopped
1 1/2 cups freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano*
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil leaves
3 tablespoons butter
- Peel the eggplants and cut them lengthwise in slices. Set the slices in a pasta colander; sprinkle with salt and let them stand for about 1 hour.
- Pat the slices dry and dredge them in flour.
- In a large skillet, fry the slices in hot oil until golden on both sides. Season with pepper.
- Line the bottom of a buttered 11x7x2-inch baking dish with a layer of fried eggplant slices. Top with layer of chopped tomatoes, Parmigiano-Reggiano, chopped basil and dot with butter. Continue building up layers of eggplant, tomatoes, cheese and basil, ending with butter.
- Place in the preheated oven at 400°F (205°C) for about 15 minutes. Allow to set for 10 to 15 minutes before serving.
Makes 4 to 6 servings.
*If unavailable, substitute with fresh Parmesan cheese. Do not use the pre-grated canned variety.