1-2 medium eggplant
3 eggs (well beaten in large bowl)
2-3 cups of flour OR breadcrumbs
canola oil (for pan frying)
your favorite tomato sauce
2 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded
8 oz. ricotta cheese
1/4 cup chopped parsley, fresh or dried
black pepper to taste
1/2 cup parmesan or romano cheese, shredded or grated
- Peel the eggplant and slice very thin, lengthwise. (the thinner the better!)
- Bread the eggplant slices. If using flour: first coat in flour, then dip completely in egg, and then dredge again in flour. If using breadcrumbs: dip first in egg, then in breadcrumbs. [I believe that flour is healthier because the breadcrumbs soak up a lot of oil while frying; both are delicious!]
- Heat the canola oil in large skillet on fairly high heat. There should be enough oil to completely cover the skillet and it should be about 1/4" deep.
- Fry each eggplant slice in the oil until lightly browned. As you take them out to put in the next batch, blot them on a paper towel to absorb the excess oil.
- Make the cheese filling by combining the ricotta cheese, parsley, black pepper, and 1/4 cup parmesan cheese. This is a basic filling and you can vary the amounts to taste as you wish.
- In a 9"x11" baking dish, lightly coat the bottom with tomato sauce. Take one slice of eggplant, add a spoonful of filling and fold the slice over. Continue with the rest of the slices. Once they are all filled, spoon tomato sauce on each one, then sprinkle with the mozzarella and remaining parmesan cheese.
- Bake in an oven preheated to 350 degrees F until heated through and cheese is melted, about 30 minutes. Bake for the first 20 minutes with aluminum foil to prevent the cheese from getting overdone. If you are freezing for future use, you don't need to bake it now - just tightly cover and freeze. You can bake it later thawed out or frozen (just allow longer baking time if frozen, of course).