Melanzane Alla Parmigiana - Italian Cooking
|Pelati tomatoes||2 Pound, pureed (for the red sauce)|
|Mozzarella cheese||1 Pound, grated|
|Parmesan cheese||1⁄2 Pound, grated|
|Eggplants||2 Large, sliced|
|Fresh basil leaves||8 Ounce (for the red sauce)|
|Red onions||1 Large, slice (for the red sauce)|
|Garlic||5 Clove (25 gm), chopped finely (for the red sauce)|
|Olive oil||3 Tablespoon (Leveled) (for the red sauce)|
|Salt and pepper||1 Tablespoon (Leveled) (for the red sauce)|
|Canola oil||1⁄2 Pound|
1. Rinse the Eggplants well and slice them thin, Layer the slices on a tray, covering every layer with a generous sprinkle of sea salt this will extract water from the vegetable, making it lighter and easier to cook let it rest for few 2-3 hours in advance.
2. Grate the Parmesan and the Mozzarella and keep it aside in different bowl.
3. To Make the Red Sauce - In a sauce pan pour about 3 Tbsp of Olive Oil, sauté the chopped Onion on a medium high flame, when it starts to brown add the garlic, and in about three-five minutes add the Pelati. (You can process them in a mixer to speed up the cooking time and to make the sauce a bit thinner).
4. Add half of the Basil, season with Salt and Pepper, and cook for about 30-40 minutes on a medium flame.
5. For the Melanzane Alla Parmigiana - In the mean time, take a large non-stick pan and pour the Canola Oil and let it heat up.
6. In a wide plate pour a few tablespoons of flour, dip the Eggplant slices in it and fry them lightly.
7. As they finish cooking, take them out of the pan and lay them on some paper towel in a couple of trays. Let them dry and cool off.
9. In a baking tray sprinkle a bit of Olive Oil and start layering your ingredients: a few slices of fried eggplant, some red sauce, a couple of handfuls of mozzarella, a couple of tablespoons of Parmesan, a few leaves of Basil, a little touch of Salt and Pepper.
10. Keep on layering the ingredients, until you reach the top of the tray, top it with some tomato sauce, mozzarella, Parmesan and put in a hot oven for about 25-30 minutes.
11. Just before serving, if needed, you can broil the Melanzane for a couple of minutes to add a delicious crisp factor to the top.
12. Serve garnished with a few leaves of basil, a sprinkle of Parmesan, a touch of olive oil and some freshly ground pepper.