The Venable Family

Our Adventures in Parenthood and Beyond

Monday, January 21, 2013

Eggplant Parmesan

After reading my journal the other day, and realized that this month is my eight year anniversary of being a vegetarian. Looking back, I realize I didn't have the healthiest first couple of years of vegetarianism. I think I started out strong in 2005, but then with factors such as me not knowing how to cook/living with meat eaters/and being busy, I found myself basically just eating whatever my family made minus meat. And to be honest, I wasn't a HUGE fan of veggies! (Gasp!) 

So, by 2007-2010, I know that's a ridiculously long time, I wasn't exactly the best vegetarianism. BUT, moving out to Utah and living on my own, I learned a lot. When I got married, I learned how to cook and I gave veggies a chance, and I actually love them! So, the last three years I've been trying to eat healthier, and when I find a recipe I just LOVE I can't help but share it! 

So, I've had a lot of vegetarian friends and non vegetarian friends ask about this recipe, so this is my slightly changed version of Eggplant Parmesan! 
(Super step by step, with pictures!) 

Start with a Large Eggplant.

    This is totally a large eggplant!
    Peel and cut the eggplant (eggplants have FREAKISHLY thick skin!)  into 1/3 size slices
    (***After you let the eggplant sit for just a few minutes, it will start to discolor like so. It's just oxidation, and totally normal.***)
    Once you've cut the eggplant, layer it in a strainer and salt generously.  Let it sit like this for thirty minutes.

    After the eggplant has soaked in the salt for thirty minutes,  run cold water over it and pat dry.

    Next, fill two dishes with 2 beaten eggs and the other with bread crumbs. We used progresso italian because the seasoning is delicious! (we have these random Tupperware dishes that are PERFECT for dredging and french toast haha.)
    Next, dredge the eggplant slices in the egg first, then the bread crumbs
    Fry the eggplant on medium high, for about three minutes per side until golden brown.
    BUT, be careful! I started it on medium high and it was a grease popping massacre! Start it on low, and work your way up to medium high!

    They'll look about like this. Drain them on an absorbent paper towel.
    Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Lay half of the eggplant in a dish sprayed lightly with cooking spray (or use shortening)

    Cover the eggplant in half of the pasta sauce (About 1.5 cups) 
    Cover the sauce layer with half of the mozzarella cheese (about 1/4 cup) Also cover it with half the Parmesan cheese (about 1/6 cup)

    Repeat this step again using the rest of the eggplant and sauce and cheese until you have two layers.

    Cook the dish for about 25-30 minutes.

    Viola! Eggplant Parmesan!

    We dished it with asparagus and it was pretty yummy! My only advice is double triple check the consistancy of the eggplant before you take it out. It should be softer and not crunchy.

    So, basically it's pretty simple but mega delicious and you'll feel like a chef afterward!

    Happy 8 years to me! :) 


  1. I think I might try this! Looks good.

  2. It was so delicious!! Try it and let me know what you think!!