Ciao, welcome back to my blog!
For the recipe of the week, I am going to show you how to make easy aubergine parmigiana in the pan!
This is a quicker and healthier version of my absolute favourite dish from the Italian tradition, usually called in Italian "parmigiana di melanzane" or "melanzane alla parmigiana".
The classic version would take a long time because it requires frying the aubergines, which will make the whole smell for days.
Moreover, fried aubergines increase massively the number of calories of the dish.
Details that matter to me. My grandma would have shaken her head in despair seeing how our generation is so into cutting time to do anything.
On the other hand, the best part of this healthier recipe is that you can toss everything in a pan and it will take only 15 minutes to cook, instead of using the oven, which will make you save money on electricity bills as well as precious time.
At the end of the day, I always prefer to cook on the stove and I use the oven only when I really need to, such as baking pizza, cakes or roasts.
Parmigiana di melanzane recipe
Ingredients for 2:
-4 medium aubergines
-2 cloves of garlic
-a bunch of fresh basil (or in alternative some dry oregano)
-750ml of tomato passata
-a tbsp of salt
-half teaspoon of chilli flakes
-250g of Parmesan cheese
-Start with the aubergines first. Using a large chef’s knife, cut off the green stalk with a sharp knife and discard. Then, cut them into round, even slices, making sure they are not too thin otherwise they will burn easily while grilling them. The reason for not doing it lengthwise is because they won't fit properly in a round pan. That sort of longer slices is perfect for oven trays.
-Place the rings in a pan and grill them until golden (it should take around 8 minutes per batch if you are using a normal pan)
-Prepare your tomato sauce: the homemade one would be preferable, if not, simply open a tomato passata bottle and pour half of it in a bowl. Season it with fresh chopped garlic, basil leaves (or oregano), olive oil, salt and chilli flakes.
-In another pan drizzle some extra virgin olive oil and pour a generous tablespoon of tomato sauce for the first layer: then add the grilled aubergines and some mozzarella slices and grate some parmesan cheese on top.
-Repeat the process until you finish all the ingredients: you should have 4 layers in total (it depends on how big the aubergines are, though).
Finish with an extra generous layer of parmesan cheese and let it cook covered with the lid for 10 minutes.
-After 10 minutes, let it cook for another 5 without the lid to let the excess water evaporate.
These last few minutes really make all the difference: the first layer should form a yummy, slightly burned crust made of tomato passata and melted cheese which is truly delicious and for me it is the best part!
The result should be more or less like the above! It looks a bit messy, you know by now that my presentations are not super eye-pleasing but I swear their taste is divine!
Serve hot while the mozzarella is still stringy which reminds me that this is a great alternative to pizza as it is gluten-free!
Other motives to make it:
-it is suitable for vegetarians
-it has very low carbs so it would be suitable for paleo or keto diets.
Do you need more excuses to try it??
Enjoy this lush aubergine parmigiana dish with a glass of great red wine!
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Check out also another of my recipe with aubergines: