For those of you who are like me and slightly intimidated by an eggplant, here are a few tips on how to pick out a good, ripe eggplant for your recipes. Don’t screw this up you som-bitch.
- The eggplant should be vivid in color with a green cap and stem, medium in size, and free of any blemishes or dark spots
- Check the firmness of the eggplant by pressing your thumb against the skin. The skin should bounce back after your press your thumb into it.
- Use your eggplant within 2 days of purchase if stored in a cool, dry place. If you refrigerate the eggplant, place in a perforated plastic bag and use within 3-5 days.
Once you have selected the perfect eggplant, enjoy using it in the following recipe and definitely don’t “F” it up.
3 large eggs (staple item)
3 T. skim milk (staple item)
¾ c. Italian-seasoned breadcrumbs (staple item)
2 T. grated Parmesan cheese ($2.35/8 oz)
1 large eggplant, peeled and cut into ½” thick slices ($1.00 at farmer’s market)
3 T. olive (or canola) oil (staple item)
¼ c. grated Parmesan cheese, divided (see above)
1 (8 oz) package shredded mozzarella cheese, divided ($1.50/8 oz on sale)
3 cups Ragu pasta sauce, tomato & mozzarella flavor ($0.99 on sale)
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Pop your knuckles and do 25 push ups.
- Whisk together eggs and milk until well blended
- In a separate bowl, combine breadcrumbs and 2 T. Parmesan cheese
- Dip eggplant slices into egg mixture and then dredge in breadcrumb mixture
- Cook eggplant, in three batches, in 1 T. hot oil (per batch) in a large skillet over medium heat for approximately 4 inches on each side, or until tender
- Arrange one-third of eggplant in a single layer in a lightly greased 11×7 inch rectangular baking dish. Sprinkle with 1 T. Parmesan cheese and ½ cup mozzarella cheese. Repeat layers twice. Spoon 3 cups of pasta sauce over the top.
- Bake, covered, at 375 degrees for 35 minutes. Uncover and sprinkle with remaining 1 T. Parmesan cheese and ½ c. mozzarella cheese. Bake 10 more minutes or until cheese melts.
- Yields 4 to 6 servings