Eggplant Parmesan / Parmigiana di Melanzane

I have been on my South Forbes Diet for a week now and have lost about 4 pounds. aaegg1But I am climbing the walls without any rice, bread, noodles, sugar, etc. I have eaten so much salad our pet rabbit is worried I am eating some of his rations. So, the other day, I decided to splurge a little and have some eggplant “Parmigiano” style. I figured eggplant was a vegetable and the cheese was high protein (ignore all the fat, thanks) so this worked as part of my diet. First, I sliced three western style eggplants into half-inch thick disks and fried them in vegetable oil (you can use olive oil but the dish can get a bit heavy tasting) and dried them on paper towels. Classic recipes ask that you salt the eggplant first to remove excess liquid, then dredge lightly in flour before cooking but I skipped these steps because of extreme hunger and a desire to stay away from refined wheat…

Next I opened up a can of whole peeled tomatoes, chopped them aaegg2roughly and placed them in a pan with some olive oil for just a few minutes after it hit a simmer. Next, I sliced up some mozzarella cheese thinly and grated some good parmesan cheese. To assemble place one layer of eggplants at the bottom of a heavy casserole dish, then put some tomato sauce on top, some mozzarella, some parmesan and some ripped up basil leaves and repeat the procedure until you run out of eggplant. On the top, place a heavy sprinkling of parmesan (I added mozzarella too). Put this into an oven at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for about 20-25 minutes until the cheese on top is done and it has bubbled a bit. If there is too much liquid, remove some of it with a spoon. Serve with some bread and a salad for a delicious vegetarian meal. I ate it with a thin slice of turkey breast meat and ignored the amount of fat I had just ingested. This eggplant parmesan also tastes great several hours later or even the next few days after it is made. If you want a really good classic recipe, Marcella Hazan has one in one of her earlier cookbooks. Otherwise, this is a very common dish and loads of recipes are available for it.

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10 Responses

  1. to make the dish a little bit lighter-cut the eggplant as described above, spray vegetable oil then roast for 10 minutes or until done… cooking this the traditional way (frying) makes my head spin from all the fat ;)

  2. Grazie mille Laura, I have changed the title of the dish in your honor… However, I should point out that several American Italian cookbooks refer to it as Melanzane alla Parmigiana or literally translated: eggplant in the Parma style or eggplant with Parmesan as opposed to the other way around which literally translated is Parma’s eggplant or Parmesan of Eggplant…at any rate, you all know what I mean, I think… Many thanks for visiting the website!

  3. Marcela Hazan has great recipes.
    The greeks have a similar way of preparing this but
    prepare this dish with feta.


  4. Thank you for the correction ;) I know that lots of strange names are used for this dish but… this is the correct one.
    “Parmigiana” means “from Parma”. Parma is a nice italian town. Is not stricly related to the Parmigiano, that is, like you know, a cheese. Also “Parmigiano cheese” is from Parma district.
    Quite confusing, isn’t it ;) ?

  5. i completed the 1st phase of my south beach diet weeks ago… with your new south forbes recipes, seems like i want to go back to phase 1 again!

  6. I soak the sliced eggplants in lukewarm water with salt and squeeze them to get rid of the liquid until they feel dry to the touch. This prodedure somehow prevents the eggplants from sucking much oil during frying.

  7. Jaili that low fat version sounds interesting. Virgilio that is a method I have not tried… I have salted and rinsed before cooking. Some books says the salting also gets rid of the bitterness but I don’t buy that…

  8. tried this last week, my husband liked it a lot….instead of frying the eggplant, i just brushed some oil on the aubergine and used my griddled pan….thanks for another superb dish :)

  9. edee, glad it worked for you. I dread the day that someone leaves a comment that they couldn’t stand the dish they tried…

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