Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Eggplant Parmesan - Easy Low Carb

This evening I decided to make Eggplant Parmesan for dinner. Eggplant is one of my favorites and was one of my Dad's favorites as well. While I was at Sprouts yesterday, I picked up some of the most beautiful eggplants that I've seen in quite a while and they were on sale for 98 cents each, regardless of size. I bought 5 large ones; not ones that were huge around (since they can be more seedy), but more full and longer shaped. These did not have a lot of seeds and the seeds that they did have were tender and light colored (the best in my opinion). When an eggplant is too large or getting old, they are loaded with brown colored seeds that can sometimes be bitter. I like to take a strip of skin off lengthwise every inch or so, so they look striped before slicing. It allows you to still enjoy the flavor and beauty of the purple skin but it's not too much skin.

Tonight's Eggplant Parmesan was probably one of my best. I kept it very simple. As many of you that have either made it or eaten it prepared the classic way, the eggplant is typically breaded and fried before layering in a casserole. I simply sliced my eggplant in 1/2-inch thick circles, brushed it with olive oil and seasoned with a bit of sea salt, then baked it for about 25 minutes in the oven (flipping it about half way through and then brushing again with olive oil). You simply layer a single layer of eggplant sauce, cheese (mozzarella and provolone), top with more eggplant, sauce and cheese (mozzarella and Parmesan) and bake. I used one of my favorite pasta sauces; Rao's Arrabbiata sauce because it's nice and spicy and flavorful, but you can use your own personal favorite or homemade sauce if you have it handy. After it gets layered in a casserole dish, it gets baked for 20 to 30 minutes and then I allow it to sit a bit so the cheeses set up. It was amazing. This recipe made enough for 5 to 6 generous servings. I snapped a number of photos below and included the easy peasy recipe. You will never EVER miss the breading or the frying (and surely not the clean up that's required after frying eggplant on the stove...if you've ever done that before, you know what I mean). If you like eggplant, you will absolutely love this dish. Enjoy!










Eggplant Parmesan - Low Carb

Ingredients:

3 large eggplants, cut into 1/2-inch thick round slices
1/3 cup olive oil (more, if needed)
Sea salt, to taste
1 24-ounce jar pasta sauce (I used Rao's Arrabbiata Sauce)
12-ounces (about 3 cups) shredded mozzarella cheese (more, if desired)
5 to 6 slices provolone cheese
1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese

Directions:

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Brush both sides of eggplant slices with olive oil and place on a parchment lined baking sheet or in a single layer in a nonstick roasting pan. Season with salt, to taste. Bake for 15 minutes; turn slices over, brush with additional olive oil, and bake for an additional 10 minutes, or until tender when pierced with a fork. 

Spread about 1/2 cup of pasta sauce in the bottom of a 2 to 3 quart casserole dish. Place half of the eggplant slices on top of sauce. Top and spread each slice with a spoonful (about 1 tablespoon) of sauce. Top with half of the mozzarella cheese. Fold slices of provolone cheese in half, then half again to break into fourths. Place 1/4 slice of provolone on top of each eggplant/mozzarella mound. Top with remaining half of eggplant slices. Spoon remaining pasta sauce on top of each eggplant stack. Top with remaining half of mozzarella cheese, then with final layer of Parmesan cheese. Bake for 20 to 30 minutes or until hot and bubbly. If desired, run under the broiler for a few minutes to brown cheese. Allow to sit for about 10 to 15 minutes before serving so cheese can set up. 


            

10 comments:

Sami said...

Looks great and I love eggplant. I've saved to my Pinterest so I can make it in winter.

CyberSis said...

Hi GGC,

I love eggplant but even though my hubby *claims* he doesn't like it, he will eat a similar version that I make as a *side* dish. He'll even take seconds of the *side* dish but says he'd never want it for the *main* dish. Next time I'm going to make your recipe and see if he changes his mind. He's sure to love all the cheese! :-)

Lately, to speed things up, I've been broiling the eggplant slices for about 5 minutes per side, or until beginning to soften, with the oven rack at the second position from the top. Seems to work fine, but you do have to watch it carefully ... ask me how I know! LOL!

CyberSis said...

Oops ... I might have forgotten to check the email box, so here goes! :-)

mreedks said...

Broiling the eggplant is a brilliant idea to speed up the cooking. I'll have to try that.

I had zucchini on hand, so I tried that in this recipe. It works in this recipe, but I dipped it in egg beaten with a bit of cream, then in a seasoned Parmesan cheese/almond flour mixture, then drizzled the slices with a bit of butter before I bake it for the first time. It gives it a nice flavor and an extra crunch. Zucchini really needs to be baked before combining it with the sauce/cheese, because it gives off so much liquid.

Ali B said...

GGC,

Sure hope you are ok. Have missed you.

God bless.

Alice B.

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi Ali,

Thanks for your message. Yes, I am okay. My husband fell down stairs in the basement 2 months ago and ruptured his quadricep which is a serious injury. It required surgery to repair and he has just begun the rehab process which could take a year or longer. But, the good news is he is going to try and return to work tomorrow for the first time since January. I have been busy taking care of him and doing everything around the house and work full time. Keeping my fingers crossed that his going back to work tomorrow means things are about to get back to normal and I can get back to doing the things I enjoy...like blogging! Thanks so much for checking in on me. :-)

Ali B said...

I am so sorry about your husband's fall and injury and all that you've been going through. Wonderful that things may have progressed enough that you both can get back to at least a bit more normal life. May God continue giving you both the strength to keep going.

Thank you for the update.

Alice B.

CyberSis said...

Hi Ayla,

I've been thinking about you and hoping that all was well. So sorry to hear about your husband's accident, but glad he's doing much better. Just imagine, he had to heal for a couple of months before he could even start therapy! Sounds like a lengthy road ahead of him, but he's definitely on the way now. All the best to both of you.

Paulette Silkey said...

Have so missed you and was wondering what had happened. Bless you!!! Certainly have your hands full, believing and praying that your husband will have a speedy recovery that will even shock the Drs!!! Know that you will be back when you can, just wanted to let you know you are missed!!!

unter der laterne said...

Dear Ayla, I am thinking of you and wondering how you are ?
Wishing you all the best! Fondly your Barbara from California .