I was lucky enough to be taught this dish by a non-English speaking Nonna in Bergamo, Italy. The experience was something I will never forget and imprinted in my mind why I absolutely love cooking and eating Italian food.
Three generations of women in the kitchen following the generation above, my lovely friend from school who set up the dinner and lil old me.. speaking absolutely no Italian. I sat there in complete silence watching and taking it all in – longing for the Italian life I never had and was the happiest Holly around!
Actually, I lie. I did say one thing. Au revoir. Yep. I spoke French to my dream family and to make it worse it was when I was implying thank you. I panicked! I wanted to impress my dream family! Hopefully those lovely women will be impressed now as I hope you are too…
mozzarella baked eggplant parmigiana
Serves 2 as a main
2 eggplants – aubergines
1 brown onion, roughly chopped
3 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped
1 can of crushed tomatoes
2tsp red or white wine vinegar
Bunch of basil
1/2 cup Mozzarella
Preheat the oven to 170 and line a large baking tray.
Slice the eggplant around 1-2cm thick and spread evenly around the baking tray. Don’t worry if some edges overlap. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt then bake for 15 minutes. When it’s done, keep the oven on.
While that’s in the oven, heat a few glugs of olive oil in a large large pot and add the onion and garlic. Sweat this out over a low heat for 10 minutes. You want the onion to be super soft and translucent. Now add the can of tomatoes. Fill up the empty can with water and pour in along with the salt, sugar and vinegar. Cook for 20 minutes over a low heat then blend to a smooth consistency.
Grab your oven proof dish then to layer, start with a spoonful of red sauce, followed by a layer of eggplant, a few basil leaves then a little mozzarella. Repeat until your tin is full. Sprinkle with extra cheese on top then bake for 20 minutes or until the cheese turns golden.
Nom nom nom.