It’s food prØn time: Eggplant parmesan—plus bonus BBQ edition!

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This recipe is a modified version of one I got on a political blog of all places—the old Rural Votes site where Al Giordano of Narco News fame used to blog. Somewhat labor-intensive but worth it!

INGREDIENTS:

2 eggplants, peeled and sliced in 1/4-inch thick rounds
3 eggs
1/2 cup of milk
2 cups breadcrumbs
1 cup flour
2 cups vegetable oil for frying
1 lb whole milk mozzarella cheese, grated
1 cup Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, grated
1 quart of red sauce
Red pepper flakes
Salt and pepper

INSTRUCTIONS:

1. After you peel and slice eggplant, place the slices in a collander, salt them thoroughly and let them drain for about an hour:

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2. Rinse the slices and pat dry.

3. Heat cooking oil in a wide skillet. Next to the stove set up three wide shallow bowls with ingredients for coating the eggplant. In one bowl, place flour, a dash of salt and pepper. In a second bowl crack and beat eggs with milk. In the third bowl, closest to the stove, place breadcrumbs.

4. Begin battering eggplant by coating each side of each slice in flour, then dipping floured slice into the egg wash. Finally, press the slice into the breadcrumbs until both sides are fully coated with a thin layer of crumbs.

5. Heat oil to the lower end of the medium-high range and fry each eggplant slice until golden brown, turning over half way through to cook both sides. Don’t over fill the skillet or the oil will cool and you will have soggy slices. Also make sure the temperature doesn’t become too hot or your eggplant will burn. When eggplant is cooked to desired shade of crispiness, remove from pan and place on a large flattered brown paper grocery bag covered with a layer of paper towel to absorb excess oil.

6. After all the eggplant has been fried, drained and cooled it is ready to be layered with sauce and cheese.

7. In a pan or casserole dish, create a single layer of eggplant topped with red sauce and then grated mozzarella cheese. Sprinkle each sauce layer with a few pepper flakes. Continue layering eggplant slices, sauce and cheese until you reach the top of the pan. Then top with an extra thick layer of mozzarella and sprinkle liberally with Parmigiana Reggiano cheese.

8. Bake in a pre-heated 350 degree oven until cheese is golden brown and bubbly. Serve with extra sauce ladled over slices.

BONUS BBQ EDITION!

As an extra-special bonus, here’s a chillin’ and grillin’ piece from our own Roastafarian commenter, Humboldt Blue:

Grilling tip
As everyone knows, spring time is the time to get ready for that all-important cooking technique of the south—- outdoor grilling!

I have just found out there are several stores where you can get a FREE Bar-B-Q grill!
You can get a free BBQ grill from any of the following stores:

A&P
Albertsons
Costco
Food Lion
Fry’s
Harris Teeter
Home Depot
Big Lots
Brookshire’s
Lowes
Publix
Raley’s
Safeway
Sam’s Club
Target
Vons
Trader Joe’s
Wal-Mart
Winn-Dixie

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I especially like the higher rack—which can be used for keeping things warm!

Just make sure to get a metal one… the plastic ones don’t do so well.

Ya’ll enjoy now!

Posted by Betty Cracker on 04/28/09 at 04:27 AM • Permalink

Categories: FoodRecipes

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My mother made this when we were kids, but she didn’t fry up the eggplant first. It was sheer torture.

Oh eggplant, how I loathe thee.

Number one is a very important step a lot of people forget when making eggplant parm—the salt really draws out the bitter juice from the eggplant and helps it to cook faster.

Somebody should send this link to TIDOS Yankee—I think he’s still looking for something to replace his beloved char-coal grill.

I’m there. I’m gonna try this one out next Sunday. Thanks!

My mom made eggplant parmagiana for us once when she was sick. I was the only one who liked it. From her bedroom, where she’d retired before dinnher because she just felt so lousy, she could hear the whir and grind of the kitchen disposal.

So that was the only time I’ve seen someone attempt it. I like eggplant in ratatouille and in baba ghanoush. (And if there is a food that is more fun to say than that, I don’t know it!)

I love this dish.  But as I’ve aged and expanded I’ve come up with a little more healthy version.  After salting and draining the eggplant slices, brush on both sides with olive oil then either broil or grill on both sides until deep golden brown.  Then proceed as in the original recipe.  Even simpler - layer the eggplant with fresh sliced tomatoes (preferably heirloom from the garden) and sliced fresh mozzarella in a baking pan.  Top liberally with chopped fresh basil, parmesan and seasoned crumbs.  Bake at 425 until heated through and the cheese is melted.  This is more a side dish than a main dish though.

Wow - that’s my recipe exactly.  I learned the leeching of the eggplant from an old Italian lady in North Jersey.

I have sauce…hmm.  I may go make some.

I’d like to post a BarBQ recipe but our barBQ just floated away with half of everything else in Houston this AM, and it’s still coming down, we had 8 inches of water in the back yard before I unplugged the drains.

We’ve gotten about 16 inches in the last 2 days.

I LOVE eggplant parm, but always hated the hassle, splatter and fast-food smell of frying the breaded slices. So I started baking them in a really hot (425-degree) oven on a lightly oiled baking sheet with a quick spray of oil on the top side. It works like a charm, producing eggplant slices that are crispy and less oily, and cutting down on the mess and the amount of wasted oil.

I’ve also drastically cut down on the amount of sauce I use during baking—to just a few scant spoonfuls between layers and on top –– and serve extra sauce on the side. This keeps the breading crispier and gives the dish better texture and more character (in my opinion).

One last tip: make your own bread crumbs. It’s fast and easy (if you have a food processor), much better tasting that preservative-laced store-bought bread crumbs, and a great way to use that last slice of slightly stale bread at the end of the loaf.

Kee-rist, Scooter! Stay dry.

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