Eggplant Parmigiana, designed to be shared. Yes, one of these ramekins is enough for the two of us, and the other two can easily slip in a baggy and be frozen, or walked down to a neighbor who could use some cheer up.
If you have made eggplant parmigiana, you probably followed your mother's recipe, as I used to. Mother's recipe called for coating and frying the eggplant before layering with tomato sauce and cheeses.
I'm here to tell you that you can skip the "frying". I found that simply grilling the eggplant slices is sufficient.
1. slice a big eggplant, salt the slices lightly and keep in a colander to sweat a little.
2. drizzle some olive oil over the slices and put them in a single layer on a cookie sheet in a hot oven until golden, about five-ten minutes.
3. Blend a can of tomatoes until slightly crushed. Add a drizzle of olive oil and a small pinch of oregano. You can substitute fresh thyme or basil, or fresh oregano.
4. In a greased casserole or ramekin, layer eggplant, tomatoes, 1.2 cup diced fontina or mozzarella and 1/2 cup of parmigiano.
5. Bake in a hot oven for 20 minutes or until bubbling hot, and the top all melted.
Enjoy with a glass of cabernet or chianti, and plenty of rustic bread.
Note: many vegetables can use this treatment, a variety of squashes, even chard. If you want to add protein and make it more substantial, add cooked ground beef in the layering, or grilled cubes of sausage. If adding pork sausage, use sage instead of oregano.