Recipe: Lazy Lunch’s Eggplant Partly-Parmesan
I used to hate eggplant.
I had a nasty run in when attempting to ‘sweat’ the eggplant using table salt. The eggplant was supposed to be completely covered in salt and left to leak over the sink before rinsing, breading, and cooking. I won’t go into details. Seriously, just use your imagination. But it turned me off of eggplant for years. Until I saw this amazing looking dish by Kristina at Former Chef.
I will try anything twice. And if that twice is covered in cheese, especially ricotta, the better.
So, this was actually made because, while I love Kristina’s I just don’t have the calories to eat it as a regular lunch meal. And I can be lazy. Very lazy. Very, very lazy. I’m wearing last week’s underwear.
I call it partly parmesan because calling something ‘parmesan’ always felt a little like a lie since a lot of time it’s a good deal of mozzarella…. Okay, I’m calling it that because I like the way it sounds.
I like the Muir Glen brand of pasta sauce, just get the most flavorful sauce you can find. The crunch is from the eggplant and the punch is from the sauce!
Lazy Lunch’s Eggplant Partly-Parmesan
3 cups panko
3-4 Tbsp olive oil
1 large eggplant
4-8 oz mozzarella cheese (this is really depending on how much you like your cheese)
2 oz parmesan cheese
16 oz flavorful pasta sauce
salt and pepper
1. Preheat oven to 400°F and cover a large cookie sheet with parchment paper.
2. Scramble the eggs in a container large enough for dipping. Put the panko in a good sized flat dish, a baking dish would be perfect, and drizzle with the olive oil stirring around so the oil lightly saturates all the panko. Set aside. Wash the eggplant and slice into wheels 1/2 inch thick. Dip the slices, one at a time into the egg poking holes into it like you would for french toast. Then set into the panko and cover with panko, pressing down lightly. (The sides won’t really catch very well because the skin of the eggplant is so slick. Don’t worry about it.) Set the slice onto the cookie sheet. Do this for the rest of the slices. Lightly salt and pepper the eggplant and put into the oven for 10 to 15 minutes until the crust gets golden brown.
3. Remove from the oven, flip, salt and pepper. This time though put a bit of the mozzarella and parmesan on the top. Return to the oven for another 5 to 10 minutes until the cheese melts. (Stop here for work lunch) During this time heat your sauce in a pan.
4. Remove the eggplant from the oven. Cover the plates with sauce and top with eggplant!
For work lunch:
1. Remove the eggplant from the oven and cool completely before putting into the fridge so it will retain a bit of the crunch. I made this with dinner and then had it sit out til bedtime. Put into your lunch container. Fill a separate spill proof container with the sauce, and dude, please, save your money from being used on a ‘spill proof’ designated container and use one of your old jam jars. Bring a small plate and heat the sauce on it then put on the eggplant and heat. Mmmmmm. That was my lunch today.
This really shouldn’t be at the bottom here, but whatever. Thank you so much, ThriftyDCCook! Your request for this recipe got me back on my blog. I’d really fallen into a slump there. And I’m incredibly embarrassed that I don’t know your name. I searched, really did. So, thank you, Thrifty!
This goes out to you… <insert corny 80’s music>