Eggplant Parmesan (inverted)

Eggplant parm is one of my favorite recipes to make for my family.

Slice a medium-large eggplant lengthwise 1/2 inch thick-no need to peel. (I prefer organic, heirloom eggplant that’s light purple with random white stripes.) Place overlapping, thinly sliced whole milk mozzarella cheese on one slice of eggplant and lay another eggplant slice on top.

Dredge each eggplant-cheese sandwich in seasoned all purpose flour. Smack off excess flour and then drag the sandwich through beaten eggs coating completely, then letting excess egg drip back into bowl.

Place directly onto tray with dried breadcrumbs mixed with an equal amount of best-quality grated Parmesan cheese and some black pepper). Coat well on all sides (you will need to wash and dry your hands in between assembling each sandwich.)

Place on a tray lined with wax paper and refrigerate until ready to fry (chilling for at least 30 minutes helps crumb coating adhere). Fry in 1/2 inch of hot oil, in a large nonstick skillet, until golden on both sides. (I used a mixture of extra virgin olive oil and grape seed oil-and to turn each safely, use two large off-set metal turning spatulas.)

After frying, place on a wire rack that’s placed over paper towels, to drain.

To assemble: place tomato “sauce” (Instead of the usual tomato sauce, I used whole plum tomatoes that I roasted the day before on a baking sheet- first rubbed with my garlic confit oil-in a preheated 300f oven for 1 hour (I used a convection roast mode-) When done, tomatoes were very tender and a bit blistered in places. I placed the cooked tomatoes in a jar and covered with oil and cooked garlic (garlic confit) – and refrigerated.

To use, I slipped off their skins and tore the tomatoes into pieces and placed on fried eggplant sandwiches. Top with more Parmesan and bake (covered loosely with aluminum foil) in a preheated 375f oven until hot throughout (25-30 minutes), then uncover and cook 10-15 more. Strew the top with some ribbons of fresh basil and serve now – with fresh bread 🥰😋 (I forgot to use my basil ribbons!!)

Any time I’ve suggested a tool, a piece of equipment, or a culinary term that’s unfamiliar to you, you can go to Learn to Cook for more information.

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