Monday, March 7, 2011

Eggplant Parmigiana

I saw baby eggplants at Stew Leonard's and decided right there and then that we'd have eggplant parm this week.  There are lots of recipes with various methods and ingredients, but this one stood out.  I didn't have to salt the eggplants before, I got to use my indoor grill plate, and it was baked instead of fried.  Winner!

If I only learned one thing today this would be it: Don't use olive oil for indoor grilling.  The smoke point is pretty low and it set off the smoke alarms.  At least I know they work!

I served this with linguine and grilled asparagus (the actual culprit of the smokiness).  Thanks to No Special Effects for posting this recipe!

Eggplant Parmigiana
  • one large, fat eggplant
  • olive oil
  • a handful (100g) freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup marinara sauce
  • a few sprigs of fresh oregano, leaves chopped
  • a handful of dried breadcrumbs

Preheat a grill on high until very hot (can't bear to keep your hand hovering over it for 10 seconds). Remove the stem from the eggplant and slice into 1/2-inch thick slices. Brush each slice on both sides very lightly (I stretched just a teaspoon of olive oil for the whole eggplant) with olive oil. Grill the slices until lightly charred, about a minute or so for each side. Set them aside on a tray.

Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C). In a small ovenproof dish, spread a thin layer of marinara, followed by a thin sprinkling of Parmesan, then one layer of eggplant slices. Repeat building these layers (I was able to make 3 layers), then finish with a little marinara and a good sprinkle of Parmesan. In a small bowl, toss together the breadcrumbs, 2 teaspoons of olive oil, and the chopped oregano until combined and sprinkle over the top of the dish. Bake for 30 minutes until golden and crispy on top.

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