Melanzane Alla Parmigiana / Eggplant Parmesan
Today we bring you an Italian vegetarian taste sensation and a real winter warmer with our Melanzane Parmigiana cooked by our Italian chef Andrea. Andrea uses fresh mozzarella, juicy aubergine, earthy Parmesan, homegrown basil, and Chilli No. 5’s Regal Red Pepper gourmet chilli sauce as the base. This simple but delicious recipe is packed with healthy ingredients.Aubergines are an excellent source of dietary fibre and a good source of vitamins B1, B6 and potassium. In addition it is high in the minerals copper, magnesium and manganese. So is Parmesan cheese.
- 4 big eggplants
- 12 tomatoes
- 500 grams of sliced or grated mozzarella cheese
- 100 grams of freshly grated parmesan cheese
- 1/4 cup Pizza Pizzazz Chilli Oil
- 2 medium onions finely chopped
- 6 medium garlic cloves crushed or grated
- 1 small bunch basil leaves half chopped and half just the leaves
- salt & pepper
- 1 bottle Chilli No. 5 Regal Red Pepper
- Wash and cut the eggplants into slices approximately 1 cm thick lengthwise. Do not forget to remove and discard the stems and the cut sides that only have the peel.
- Now attention and patience for the key point of the recipe (this part makes all the difference): Line a serving dish and place the eggplant slices on some coarse salt so that they can dehydrate. Continue making layers of eggplant + coarse salt until all the slices have contact with the salt. Let it rest for about 4 hours.
- While the eggplant is resting and dehydrating in the coarse salt, take the time to make the sauce.
- Use boiling water to peel the tomatoes by making a small X-shaped cut on the bottom of each tomato and placing them in boiling water for 1 minute or until they begin to peel. Remove them from the water and let them cool before peeling by hand or with the help of a small knife. Set aside.
- Heat 1/4 of the olive oil (low heat) in a deep pan and add the finely chopped onions. Stir for about 15 minutes, or until the onions are very soft. The softer they are the better, because they will influence the final taste of the dish. Then add half the garlic (3 medium cloves crushed or grated) and stir for another 5 minutes
- Then add the peeled tomatoes, stir a little and cover the pan. Let it cook for about 10 minutes and then stir again every two minutes. The tomatoes should cook until they fall apart completely, which can take up to 45 minutes (the time can vary if the tomatoes are more or less ripe). Also, crush the tomatoes with the help of a fork. After this period, when the sauce is homogeneous but still thick, turn off the heat, add the remaining garlic, half of the basil leaves (chopped) and also the mint leaves (also chopped) and let it rest.
- Place the washed and dried slices (use a clean towel or paper towel for this) on the BBQ.
- Assembling your Melanzane alla parmigianaThe average is that your eggplant should have 4 layers of eggplant. But it's no problem if you have more or less, it all depends on the size of the pan.
- Put some olive oil in the bottom of the baking pan and start distributing the eggplant slices. After completing the bottom with the slices, add sauce in an amount that you can spread with a spoon and cover all the slices. Do this also with the mozzarella cheese, making it cover the whole area of the pan. Put some Parmesan cheese on top of the mozzarella and sprinkle some basil leaves on top. Don't forget to add the regal red pepper sauce on each layer!
- Repeat this process again, creating layers of eggplant + sauce + mozzarella cheese + parmesan cheese + basil leaves until the pan is complete or you've used all the eggplant. Ideally, the last two layers of the whole should be mozzarella cheese, parmesan cheese, and Regal Red Pepper Hot Sauce so that they can give the oven a light gratin. Add freshly grated black pepper and a dash of Pizza Pizzazz.
Mozzarella contains B7, a vitamin used by those looking to strengthen their hair, skin, and nail health. It can also help to lower blood glucose levels for those with diabetes and is also great for bone and tooth health. Potassium helps to lower blood pressure. Zinc can help to increase the white blood cell count and help solve skin problems. Riboflavin or Vitamin B2 can help the body fight multiple conditions, including migraines. It has great antioxidant properties which can help to promote your overall health and immunity. Basil is nutrient-tastic and is an excellent source of vitamin K, manganese, and copper. Our Regal Red Pepper Sauce is made from over 15 superfoods and contains multiple antioxidants.