Eggplant Parmesan. This classic Italian dish features slices of eggplant breaded, fried, layered with cheese and marinara sauce, and baked to perfection.
- 1 large eggplant, sliced into 1/4-inch rounds
- 2 cups marinara sauce (homemade or store-bought)
- 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 large eggs, beaten
- 1 cup breadcrumbs (you can use Italian-style breadcrumbs for extra flavor)
- Olive oil, for frying
- Fresh basil leaves, for garnish (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C).
- Place the eggplant slices on a baking sheet and sprinkle both sides with salt. Let them sit for about 20 minutes. This helps to draw out excess moisture and bitterness from the eggplant. After 20 minutes, pat the eggplant slices dry with paper towels.
- Set up a breading station: Place the flour in one shallow dish, beaten eggs in another dish, and breadcrumbs in a third dish.
- Dip each eggplant slice into the flour, shaking off the excess, then dip it into the beaten eggs, and finally coat it with breadcrumbs. Press the breadcrumbs onto the eggplant to ensure they adhere well.
- In a large skillet, heat about 1/4 inch of olive oil over medium heat. Once the oil is hot, carefully add a few breaded eggplant slices at a time. Fry until they are golden brown on both sides, about 2-3 minutes per side. Transfer the fried slices to a plate lined with paper towels to absorb excess oil.
- In a baking dish, spread a thin layer of marinara sauce to cover the bottom. Place a layer of fried eggplant slices on top of the sauce. Spoon more marinara sauce over the eggplant slices, then sprinkle with shredded mozzarella and grated Parmesan cheese.
- Repeat the layers until all the eggplant slices are used, finishing with a layer of cheese on top.
- Bake in the preheated oven for about 20-25 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and bubbly, and the dish is heated through.
- Once done, remove from the oven and let it cool slightly before serving.
- Garnish with fresh basil leaves, if desired, and serve the Eggplant Parmesan with your favorite pasta or crusty bread.
Enjoy your delicious homemade Eggplant Parmesan!