- 1 medium sized eggplant, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick rounds
- 2 tsp. kosher salt
- 4 slices white bread, torn into quarters or 2 cups of breadcrumbs
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- salt and pepper
- 1/2 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
- 2 large eggs
- 3 Tbsp. vegetable oil
- 2 cups tomato sauce
- 1 cup part-skim mozzarella cheese, shredded
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 5 fresh basil leaves torn, for garnish
1. Toss half of eggplant slices and 1 teaspoon of kosher salt in large bowl until combined; transfer salted eggplant to large colander set over bowl. Repeat with remaining eggplant and kosher salt, placing second batch in colander on top of first. Let stand until eggplant releases about 1 tablespoon liquid, 30 to 45 minutes.
2. Arrange eggplant slices on triple layer paper towels; cover with another triple layer paper towels. Firmly press each slice to remove as much liquid as possible, then wipe off excess salt.
3. While eggplant is draining place rimmed baking sheet on oven rack, and heat oven to 425 degrees.
4. Pulse bread in food processor to fine, even crumbs, about fifteen 1-second pulses (you should have about 2 cups). Transfer crumbs to pie plate and stir in 1/2 cup Parmesan, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper; set aside.
5. Combine flour and 1/2 teaspoon pepper in large zipper-lock bag; shake to combine.
6. Beat eggs in second pie plate.
7. Place several eggplant slices in bag with flour; seal bag and shake to coat eggplant. Remove eggplant slices, shaking off excess flour, dip in eggs, let excess egg run off, then coat evenly with bread crumb mixture; set breaded slices on wire rack set over baking sheet. Repeat with remaining eggplant.
8. Remove preheated baking sheet from oven; add 3 tablespoons oil to the sheet, tilting to coat evenly with oil. Place breaded eggplant on sheet in a single layer; bake until eggplant is well browned and crisp, about 30 minutes, rotating baking sheet after 10 minutes, and flipping eggplant slices with wide spatula after 20 minutes. Do not turn off oven.
9.Spread 1 cup tomato sauce in bottom of 13 by 9-inch baking dish. Layer eggplant slices, overlapping slices to fit; distribute 1 cup sauce over eggplant; sprinkle with mozzarella and 1/4 cup parmesan cheese. Bake until bubbling and cheese is browned, 13 to 15 minutes. Cool 10 minutes; scatter basil over top, and serve.
Source: Cooks Illustrated