Adapted from Cook's Illustrated, this baked eggplant is superb, versatile, and lower-fat than the traditional fried. It's thrice-dipped: flour, eggs, and bread crumbs. I feel like I have a "gold mine" when I have a batch in the 'fridge! It makes great veggie sandwiches, eggplant Parmesan and a great filler for egg and pasta dishes.
- 2 medium eggplants, peeled and cut crosswise (I cut 1/4-1/2 inch wide)
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt (I use less about a teaspoon)
- 4 cups breadcrumbs (best from dense white bread, French bread, preferably NOT the kind from the can)
- 1 cup grated parmesan cheese
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon ground pepper
- 4 large eggs, beaten
- 6 tablespoons vegetable oil (I've used olive, too)
- Start by draining the eggplant: layer sliced eggplant with gentle sprinkle of salt in a colander and place a plate or lid on top). The eggplant will leak out about 2 tbs. of moisture (about a half hour-sometimes I just do set it about 15 minutes and that seems to work, too).
- I lightly wipe excess salt off with damp paper towel.
- Heat oven to 425 degrees. Prepare cookie sheet/jelly roll pan with half the oil and heat in oven while dipping/breading the eggplant.
- Mix together flour and pepper and put in large Zip-lock bag.
- Mix Parmesan and bread crumbs and put in pie plate.
- Dipping process:.
- Place about 10 slices at a time in flour and shake to coat lightly.
- Dip eggplant in beaten egg (I use a cereal bowl to dip).
- Dredge in bread crumb mixture.
- Line, without overlapping, eggplant onto cookie sheet.
- Bake for about 10-15 minutes until bottoms are lightly browned, and flip and finish cooking the other side.
- Repeat with remaining eggplant.
- Remove and cool on a wire rack.