Melanzane alla Parmigiana

Preparation Time 30 minutes
Cooking Time 45 minutes
Standing/Marinating 60-30 minutes
Serves 6-8 portions
parmigiana melanzane
Ingredients
4 large eggplant  30g basil (about a handful) 
Olive oil for frying  250g mozzarella 
8-10 ripe tomatoes or 1 x 400g tin Italian tomatoes  ½ cup grated parmigiano or pecorino cheese 
2 medium onion, finely chopped  Salt and Ground black pepper 
2 eggs 

Method:

  1. Chop or drain the tomatoes well, and cook them with the minced onion and a sprig of basil. When they have softened, drain them and put them through a blender, then cook them a little more over low heat, without letting the sauce thicken too much.  
  2. Salt the sauce when it is done and don’t add oil, as the eggplant will have absorbed enough in frying.  
  3. Peel the eggplants and cut them into 1cm slices. Salt them and place them on a board or platter to absorb the moisture. After 1 hour rinse them and pat them dry..  
  4. Heat a pan with a little oil to smoking point then fry the slices a few at a time, removing them from the oil while they are still lightly coloured. Alternately, place them on a sheet of and roast them in the oven until they brown slightly 
  5. Mince the remaining basil and slice the mozzarella into thin slices or grate the mozzarella. 
  6. Take a 30cm diameter oven-proof dish that’s about 10cm high and spread a couple of tablespoons of tomato sauce in it.  
  7. Beat the eggs with 2/3 cup of the cooked tomato sauce and set aside 
  8. Arrange a third of the eggplant in the bottom of the dish, overlapping the slices slightly, and cover them with 2 tablespoons grated cheese, 5-6 pieces basil leaves, 2-3 tablespoons of the egg sauce, and half the mozzarella. Repeat this process with another layer.  
  9. Lay down a third layer, covering it with the remaining grated cheese, egg-tomato sauce, and, if need be a little more tomato sauce to cover. 
  10. Bake in a slow oven (140DegC) for about 45 mins, turning the heat up in the last few minutes to lightly brown the top. The dish should be eaten warm, not hot.