This Parmigiana di Melanzane or No Fry Eggplant Parmesan is definitely part of our top 5 decadent Italian dishes. If you haven’t tried it before, your time has come.
It is like lasagna, without the pasta layers, so if you are trying to keep the carbs away, are on a keto diet, but not worrying much about the calories, and want a healthier version, this is for you.
In Italy, this is usually served as a primi piatti or appetizer, followed by the main dish. We like it so much that we just have a big piece and make it our main dish.
It is not a super easy dish to make, but easy enough to take it on for any given day dinner when you have more than one to two hours and want to make something extra special.
Again, it is like making lasagna but with fewer ingredients. The Lasagna sheets will be replaced by the eggplant sheets, which need a little treatment before achieving the desired consistency.
You need your eggplant sheets, your tomato sauce, and your vegan cheeses (you can use regular mozzarella and parmesan if Vegetarian), both Vegan and Vegetarian versions work well. Then you assemble it and put it in the oven. Here is our 5-minutes Vegan Parmesan Recipe
You usually make the standard version frying the eggplant sheets, but I am super happy with a healthier one where I just grill them.
No-Fry Eggplant Parmesan
- Shredder (if using un-shredded cheese)
- Baking Tray
- Mandoline (optional)
- Start by washing and slicing the eggplants very thinly with a sharp knife, or even better if you have a mandolin, the layers should be a little less than 1/8 inch (2 mm).
- Lay the slices on a tray or colander where they can drain and put the coarse sea salt over. The salt will make the eggplant “sweat” and lose some water and bitterness. Let them rest for one hour.
- Pre-heat the oven at 400ºF (about 200ºC).
- Prepare the tomato sauce by chopping the onion and garlic finely. Stir fry them in olive oil for a minute and add the tomato puree. Let it simmer on low heat for 45 minutes.
- Wash the eggplants from the extra coarse salt. Dry them with a tablecloth. Oil a tray and put them on it with a splash of extra virgin oil. Put them in the oven and grill for 10-15 minutes.
- Shred your mozzarella cheese or grind it with and shredder.
- Go back to your tomato sauce and add the basil leaves, sugar, salt, and pepper and take them out of the heat.
- Take the eggplant out of the oven and prepare the tray where you are going to assemble the dish.
- Put some oil on the bottom of a deep tray.
- Place a layer of tomato sauce, followed by a layer of grilled eggplant, salt, and pepper, followed by mozzarella and parmesan cheese.
- Repeat until you fill the pan, making sure you finish with a layer of tomato sauce, mozzarella, and parmesan cheese to ensure it looks well grilled.
- Place in the oven keeping the 400ºF (about 200ºC) for 40 minutes.
- Take it out of the oven and let it rest.
Top it with some basil leaves.
Use our 5-minutes Vegan Parmesan Recipe