As many of you know, I studied abroad in Florence, Italy during my senior year of college. While I was there, the class that I chose to take was Food and Wine Pairing which meant that I had to cook and drink wine every day – for school. Not only was it fun, but I also got to learn a lot of amazing recipes. One of my favorites was this Eggplant Parmesan recipe. I figured that I would share that with you guys!
This eggplant parmesan recipe is super simple to make, yet incredibly delicious. You have the warm eggplant with a bit of a crust from the breadcrumbs and of course the ooey-gooey cheese. YUM!
Here is what you will need for a recipe for 2:
1 Large Eggplant
200g (2 cups) of Tomato Puree
1 Ball of Mozzarella Cheese (about 125g or ½ cup)
40g (⅓ cup) of Grated Parmigiano-Reggiano Cheese
1 Garlic Clove
10 Basil Leaves
40g (⅓ cup) of Flour
4 Aluminum Baking Dishes or Ramekins
Method of Preparation:
For the tomato sauce:
- Add a drizzle of olive oil to a pan and heat on medium
- Once the oil is warm, smash the clove of garlic with the skin still attached and fry it until golden brown (the key here is to have the garlic release it’s flavor – it will be removed later)
- Add in the tomato puree
- Season to your liking with salt and black pepper – I also add a bit of crushed red pepper flakes
- Add some basil
- Cook for a minimum of 5 minutes
- Remove the garlic clove if you haven’t already
You can either peel your eggplant ahead of time or simply cut it in slices, then use circular cookie cutters to make different sized circles, thus removing the skin.
- Cut the eggplant into slices that are about ¾cm or ¼in thick
- Dredge each eggplant slice in flour
- Heat up a pan and add just a drizzle of olive oil
- Fry each eggplant slice on both sides and set aside on a paper towel to drain the excess oil
(Note: you may have to add a bit of olive oil before each batch is fried).
- Salt and pepper each slice after it has been fried
- Once you have fried all of the eggplant slices, take your aluminum tin or ramekin and lightly coat the inside with olive oil
- Sprinkle the bread crumbs onto the bottom of the tin or dish while shaking any excess onto the sides – this should form a crust and not be absorbed by the oil
- Start the layering process
The Layering Process
Starting with the bigger pieces on the bottom, layer a slice of eggplant, a spoonful of tomato sauce, a basil leaf, Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, and a mozzarella slice. Repeat this process until you reach the top of the dish
Place the aluminum foil tins or ramekins onto a baking sheet for easier control of them all. Bake them at 150°C (300°F) for 15 minutes.
Once they are done, you will take a knife and carefully go around the eggplant so that it can slide right out when flipped onto a plate.
There you have it, Eggplant Parmesan!
I loved this recipe so much when I first made it in class in Italy that I chose to make it for my final assignment. I’ve also made it a couple of times from home as well and each time it turned out amazing!
I would definitely recommend taking the Food and Wine Pairing class if you are studying abroad at The Italian International Institute Lorenzo de’ Medici! You learn so many great things about wine and food!
If you make this recipe yourself, let me know how it turns out! I hope you enjoyed it!