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I LOVE EGGPLANT PARM: MY WELL RESEARCHED RECIPE

Updated: Dec 26, 2023

Over the past couple of months, I have been experimenting with and was determined to make the simplest most delicious eggplant parmgiana possible. I have tried cutting it thick, cutting it thin, egg wash, no egg wash, only flour coated, no coating at all, fried and baked, and only baked no fried. And this recipe is what I have come down to and is in my opinion and those who I have fed at my table agree is the best.


Initially I attempted to incorporate too much detail in the initial preparation in order to simplify and accelerate the process. But like all things worthwhile, delicious and good in life as a general rule it is in the love, preparation and the details you find that.


My goal and the ultimate test at the end of any dinner I make for family or friends, are their plates empty? That is where the rubber meets the road. So first a vision or plan, pay close attention to details, the proper equipment, have the best ingredients, take your time and you will be rewarded with empty plates. That is where quality lies.


SIGMA3iOC reader, Rupert D. made it and sent me this picture. Looks great!

Rupert D: "So great!  Had to use Rao's -- Monte's arriving tomorrow!"



For simplicity, and because I do not have a full-sized oven, I cooked this entire recipe in a Breville 1800W Smart Toaster Oven Pro Stainless Steel. I have had it for several years, and it does an excellent job.


Ingredient list:

Two not too big medium sized eggplants

1 or 2 eggs (from your neighbor who has their own chickens if you are that lucky. I am :)

Milk or half and half

Fresh Mozzarella

Fresh Ricotta

Grated Pecorino Romano

Flour

Olive oil

Salt (to taste)

Tomato sauce: Your own homemade sauce OR a good, jarred sauce that you use and like. I use "Monte's" spiced tomato sauce which I find to be the best on the market. I have also done a pretty extensive study of jarred sauces. Use it if you can find it. If you can't find it, ask for it.


Let's begin:

*Cut the ends off both eggplants, skin them and cut them lengthwise in about 3/8" thick slices. Should make 7 or so pieces each.


*In a plastic bag put about a half cup of flour and several slices of eggplant at a time, shake well and coat. Coat them all with flour and keep them reserved on the side. (Note: As you complete each step clean your counter and tools and continue that until you are done. Makes everything simple and seamless)


*In a 350F degree preheated oven in a steel roasting pan very, generously coated with olive oil place as many slices of the floured eggplant as will fit in the pan after you have fully coated them in an egg wash you made with the eggs and milk or half and half. Cook them for about 15 minutes on each side or until fully cooked and nicely browned. This saves you from a messy stove top frying situation.


*In a 2 1/2 quart ceramic baking dish with several tablespoons of sauce coating the bottom begin to lay down your eggplant across the length of the dish.


*On this first layer of eggplant spread about two very generous tablespoons of ricotta. Sprinkle it with some Pecorino Romano and a thin slice of mozzarella and then two more tablespoons of sauce. Repeat for one more layer, then the final layer of eggplant on top, with two tablespoons of sauce and topped off with a thin slice of mozzarella.


*At this point after everything is assembled, I take a very sharp knife and I carefully make a cut across and down the middle while things are still firm to make serving easier. This will serve 4 to 6 people.


*Baking: Since everything is fresh and now cooked you really only want to get it properly heated through before serving. Bake at 280F degrees for 30 minutes covered. And then continue on broil uncovered at 300F degrees for about 8 minutes or until the mozzarella is melted and lightly browned. Keep your eye on it.


Serve with sauce on the side or generously spooned over the top, with a side of broccoli with white beans, lemon and garlic, maybe a little pasta, fresh crusty baked bread and your favorite Montepulciano or Chianti red wine. It is simple and it is delicious!


That Broccoli recipe as well as many others are coming soon :)


Are you cooking yet America? JGL 12/13/23

A stock photo that is a close representation because I cannot figure out how to get my pictures on my website yet :)



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Guest
Dec 30, 2023
Rated 5 out of 5 stars.

I've been cooking Italian food my whole life. So when I read this recipe for the first time, I hesitated thinking 'how good could this eggplant parmigiana be if it's not made with breadcrumbs?'. Even while it was cooking, I was skeptical. When I tasted the finished product, wow, I was blown away. It was fast, easy, and DELICIOUS!!! Try it. You won't be disappointed.

Maria C

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So happy you enjoyed it. Everyone agrees on good food, it is the great equalizer :)


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