Monday, June 2, 2014

Eggplant Parmesan

Yay! Excitement. My box came.

Once a month I get a Farm Fresh To You box delivered to my front door with locally grown fruit and vegetables. It's wonderous. And this month was a total winner -- they sent me a couple eggplants. I love eggplant. I forget how much I love eggplant, and never notice it in the usual produce areas I haunt so I never get any. Well, I have some now!

So, I had to make eggplant parmesan of course. You can't have eggplant in your house and not make eggplant parmesan. Well, okay, maybe you can, but this girl can't. It's one of my favorite dishes and I always get it when I go to Italian food. So, it being me, I had to healthy it up a little. No deep frying for this girl. And let me tell you, it turned out splendiferous.

The breading was crunchy and flavorful. (The trick is to put the seasonings in the dredging flour and egg wash. It also makes dredging in panko easier because you don't have to worry if you didn't measure enough, you have to make more than you need to match your spice ratios.)  I wished I had a full stomach so I could eat more than two eggplant steaks it was that good (so it's probably a good thing I don't). 4ft thought it was fabulous and inhaled his and tried to horn in on mine. I had to stab him with my fork. It was a vicious battle but I'm proud to say I won and the eggplant on MY plate went into MY stomach.

It makes quite a bit and since 4ft and I were the only ones eating it we had quite a bit left over. I let it cool completely to room temperature and then put it in a ziplock (without sauce -- just the oven-fried eggplant steaks). Let me tell you, it's just as good reheated, IF you bake them to reheat. I had the oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit and baked them for about 10 minutes. They were just as crispy and wonderful. I'm totally stoked because it was so delicious for lunch. Especially cuz I have mine with meat sauce -- hooray for protein!

Coming soon... Sesame-Crusted Eggplant w/ sticky dipping sauce and eggplant pizzas (I have a whole other eggplant to use) 

Eggplant Parmesan

1 small eggplant sliced into 1/2 inch round steaks (8 - 10 slices)
2 TBS almond flour
2 TBS Parmesan cheese
1 tsp salt - divided
2 tsp garlic powder - divided
1/4 tsp pepper - divided
1/2 tsp Italian seasoning - divided
1 egg
2 TBS buttermilk
2 TBS water
1 cup panko
spray of extra virgin olive oil
2 cups favorite marinara or meat sauce

1.) Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
2.) In a shallow bowl, combine eggs, buttermilk, water, 1/2 tsp salt, 1 tsp garlic powder, 1/8 tsp pepper, and 1/4 tsp Italian seasoning. Whisk together until mixed thoroughly.
3) In a gallon ziplock bag, combine almond flour, Parmesan, 1/2 tsp salt, 1 tsp garlic powder, 1/8 tsp pepper, and 1/4 tsp Italian seasoning. Shake bag to mix well.
4.) Put panko in another shallow bowl.
5.) Drop eggplant in the gallon bag of almond flour mix and shake to coat well.
6.) One at a time, dip in egg mixture, and the dredge through panko. Place on wire rack on a cookie sheet. Spray with olive oil.
7.) Bake for 15 - 20 minutes until golden brown.
8.) Serve hot with your favorite meat or marinara sauce on a bed of noodles
9.) ENJOY!

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