Eggplant Parmesan or Berenjena Parmesano has only been on my menu for a few short years. Although I have lived in New York state for many, many years, I was always partial to the chicken version of this recipe. Out to dinner at one of my favorite Italian restaurants one night and my friend raved about their eggplant parmesan dish, so I had to try it. It was quite tasty, so I had to prepare my own version, especially with a homemade bolognese style sauce. Great thing about this recipe, besides that the eggplant was baked instead of fried, is that my husband enjoyed it as much as I did. Makes things alot easier when planning a dinner menu. We enjoyed eggplant parmesan for a few days and even stored 2 slices in the freezer for later. I do love traditional flavors of classic Italian recipes, but I also love adding my own touch when cooking at home.
1 cup flour
4 eggs, lightly beaten
2 1/2 cups seasoned bread crumbs
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese, plus 1 cup separate
1 tablespoon dried Italian seasoning, plus more for garnish
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 large eggplant, peeled and sliced into about 8 slices(about 1/2 inch thick)
5 cups of bolognese sauce or your favorite red sauce
12 fresh basil leaves, sliced or torn, optional
12 slices os Spanish chorizo from the deli, optional
Oregano , fresh or dried
2 cups shredded mozzarella
1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
2. Prepare your breading station: In one shallow dish, add the flour. In the second dish add the eggs. In the third dish, combine the bread crumbs, 1/2 cup parmesan cheese, 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning and 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes.
3. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper and drizzle with olive oil, set aside. Peel and slice the eggplant. Dredge in flour, dip in egg, then cover with bread crumb mixture. Transfer to lined baking sheet. Repeat until all done with the breading. Drizzle the tops of eggplant with more olive oil.
4. Bake for about 30 minutes, turning over after 15 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside. In a bowl, combine the mozzarella and parmesan cheese, set aside.
5. In a large baking dish, add 2 1/2 cups to the bottom and spread out evenly. Add the breaded eggplant on top of sauce. If using deli sliced Spanish chorizo, add it on top of eggplant. Add the remaining sauce, basil, oregano and mozzarella/parmesan mix. Sprinkle with more Italian seasoning and bake for about 30 minutes. The last few minutes of baking, turn broiler onto high and cook the eggplant just until cheese browns up in spots. Never leave the broiler unattended. Yields 4 servings.
*Click onto picture for sauce recipe.