I had this dish for the very first time (actually the first time I have ever had eggplant period) on the cruise that we just got back from. For those of you that are skeptical and scared of eggplant, honestly once the breading is smothered on it and the yummy marinara and cheeses are all melty on top you can hardly even taste the eggplant at all. So technically I really don't even know what eggplant tastes like, but I do know that eggplant parmesan is YUMMY! The best part - this recipe has the eggplant baked, not fried. My new menus feature ZERO items that we will be deep frying! WAHOO! I am hoping to get rid of the deep fryer and maybe replacing it with a grill or maybe a panini maker?? This may be a little out of reach - but hey, a girl can dream :).
Well, this story has a very sad ending. We served this for dinner last night, and less than 1/4 of the kids even attempted to try it. They all came in and ranted and raved about how good it looked, then asked the dreadful question "what is that?" It was all over in one word. EGGPLANT. I haven't decided whether or not I should remove this item from my menus. There was so much waste, but I really really really wish the kids would just try it! Am I trying to expand their horizons a bit too far?? Maybe...
3 eggplant, peeled and thinly sliced
2 eggs, beaten
4 cups Italian seasoned bread crumbs
6 cups spaghetti sauce, divided
1 (16 ounce) package mozzarella cheese, shredded and divided
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided
1/2 teaspoon dried basil (we used fresh parsley)
Preheat oven to 350 F.
Dip eggplant slices in egg, then in bread crumbs.
Place in a single layer on a baking sheet.
Bake in preheated oven for 5 minutes on each side.
In a 9x13 inch baking dish spread spaghetti sauce to cover the bottom. Place a layer of eggplant slices in the sauce.
Sprinkle with mozzarella and Parmesan cheeses. Repeat with remaining ingredients, ending with the cheeses.
Sprinkle basil on top. (If using fresh basil or parsley, don't sprinkle on top until right before serving.
Bake in preheated oven for 35 minutes, or until golden brown.
Looks delish huh! I really really loved this recipe!! If I decide to take this off of my menus, I guess I will just have to settle with making it at home. YUMMMM!