Grilled Eggplant Parm

Eggplant Parm is a favorite around here.  This recipe is a little twist on the traditional eggplant parm.  Layering with fresh tomatoes and basil makes this a perfect recipe for the months ahead when our gardens will be providing us with those delicious summer tomatoes and fresh herbs.

I love all kinds of pasta.  This can be served over pasta, on the side of pasta or with no pasta at all.  It all depends upon what you are in the mood for.  Serve it as pictured and you have the perfect appetizer.  Serve it with a salad and you’ve got a great light dinner or lady’s lunch.  Any way you serve this, it is bound to please!

Ingredients

  • 2 medium eggplants, peeled and sliced into 1/4-inch thick rounds
  • Olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • Sea Salt and Pepper
  • 28 ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 5 Roma tomatoes, sliced into 1/4-inch thick rounds
  • 1/2 cup Bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
  • Basil leaves
  • 1 lb. of your favorite dried pasta

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 400.
  • Place eggplant rounds on a baking sheet and sprinkle generously with sea salt.  You may layer eggplant if needed, just make sure each layer is covered with salt. Let sit for about 30 minutes (Note: moisture will leek out of the eggplant). After 30 minutes, rinse the rounds, then squeeze any moisture out of them. Pat dry, season with salt and pepper, and set aside while you heat up a pan.
  • Heat a large skillet over medium heat – add a little olive oil.  Grill the eggplant until nicely browned on both sides, about 15 minutes. Set aside.
  • In a large baking or casserole dish, pour about 1/2 to 1 cup of the crushed tomatoes. Layer the eggplant on top of the crushed tomatoes. Follow with a layer of sliced tomatoes, salt and pepper, and a sprinkle of some torn basil leaves. Repeat, ending with a final layer of tomatoes, and some more torn basil and the minced garlic. Sprinkle with bread crumbs and parmesan cheese, and drizzle with olive oil.
  • Bake uncovered for about 30 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, cook your pasta and heat the leftover crushed tomatoes in a small saucepan. When the eggplant is ready, it’s time to plate. Put a serving of pasta on each plate, top with some leftover crushed tomatoes, and finally place a few eggplant stacks on top. Sprinkle any basil you have left on top and serve with additional parmesan cheese.
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