This lovely recipe is courtesy of the October edition of my latest obsession; the American food magazine Bon Appetit which I read religiously on my iPad every month.
I am slightly obsessed with aubergine – as you can see in the archives. I just like the soft texture and mellowness you get when they’re roasted and how well they pair with cheese (another of my obsessions).
This dish is more or less a non-layered Parmigiana di Melanzane and I must say I prefer it this way. The aubergine is firmer in these bigger pieces and therefore less floppy and the whole dish requires less sauce so the flavours are more distinct. The finished dish just has a little more finesse and is worthy as starring as the main course at any dinner party.
Eggplant parmesan with mozzarella, 4 portioner
Adapted from Bon Appetit’s recipe.
4 garlic cloves
1 tbsp tomato purée
1 tin (400 g) crushed tomatoes (or whole)
2 medium aubergines
4 sprigs oregano (I used dried)
150 ml fresh breadcrumbs
250 g buffalo mozzarella
ca 40 g grated parmesan
Pre-heat the oven to 200 C. Using a vegetable peeler, remove skin from rounded side of each eggplant half, leaving a 1 cm strip of skin around the cut edges. Oil an edged baking sheet and place the aubergines cut side down. Drizzle with more oil, add salt, pepper and oregano as well as three whole garlic cloves. Cover with tin foil and bake until soft, 40-45 minutes.
In the meantime, make the tomato sauce: Add one clove of grated garlic to a non-stick saucepan on medium heat. Stir for a minute or so, add the tomato purée followed by the tinned tomatoes and a splash of water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer, partially covered, until slightly thickened, 15–20 minutes. Season and set tomato sauce aside.
Toss breadcrumbs with oil. Transfer eggplants, oregano, and garlic to two large shallow baking dishes (or simply use the same one), placing eggplants cut side up. Top eggplants with tomato sauce and mozzarella, then sprinkle with breadcrumbs and Parmesan. Bake until mozzarella is bubbling and breadcrumbs are golden, 25–30 minutes.
Serve immediately with a green salad and nice bread.