Eggplant Parmagian (pronounced "par-ma-john") is one of our favourite eggplant dishes.
It is a gourmet Italian dish using eggplant in a tomato-herb sauce with the hard grating cheese from Parma, Italy which is traditionally made in big rounds.
This delicious main entree is best served with a fresh vegetable salad, and foccacia (Italian flat bread).
Here is a a healthier and easier version that does not require deep-frying the eggplant.
2 28 fl.oz. cans crushed organic tomatoes
3 Tbs. organic dry basil
1 Tbs. dry greek oregano
1 medium onion, diced
1/2 bulb ( 3 to 6 cloves) fresh organic garlic, crushed or minced
3-4 Tbs organic extra virgin olive oil
2 tsp. fine unrefined sea salt
1 lb. mozarella cheese
2/3 cup parmagian cheese
2 medium Italian eggplants
1. Make the tomato sauce:
This is a simple and healthy all purpose tomato sauce that can also be used for pasta dishes and pizza:
Sautee onions in oil until soft and translucent.
Add tomatoes, garlic, herbs and sea salt.
Cook on medium heat for 45 minutes until thick and flavours are well blended. Stir occasionally.
A: Add 1/4 cup diced celery.
B: add 1/2 cup mixed chopped greens. (spinach, rapini).
C: To make the sauce more spicy, add 1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper.
2. Pre-bake the eggplant:
Cut whole eggplant in 1/2 " thick slices. Brush each eggplant slice with olive oil on both sides and place flat on a metal baking tray.
Bake in 350 degree oven for 15 to 20 minutes until soft.
3. Grate the cheeses in 2 separate bowls.
4. Assemble the dish:
In a stainless steel baking dish, (14" X 10" X 2" deep) layer tomato sauce, eggplant rounds, tomato sauce, cheeses, eggplant rounds, tomato sauce, cheeses.
Leave at least 1/2" of empty space in the baking dish above the top layer.
5. Bake at 350 degrees for 1/2 hour. The cheese will melt and bubble.
Yields 8 portions.