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Parmigiana di Melanzane

Parmigiana di Melanzane

 
With the heat and humidity of summer, focusing on a crisp, cool wine is at the forefront. This week’s pairing follows the Italian wines focus. You can use the baked eggplant as a starter, as a midday snack or a side dish to a meal. You can make it ahead of time for a meal or serve it chilled after baking. This is such a flexible and delicious dish for the summer.

Parmigiana di Melanzane or (Italian Baked Eggplant with Tomato and Mozzarella)
Parmigiana Di Melanzane

 

Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 40 minutes
Serves: 6

 


Photo Courtesy of: CuachellaBlogspot.it

Ingredients:

  • 6 – Aubergines (Italian or Japanese/Chinese eggplants) large and slender. Roughly 1 pound 8 ounces (Note – most grocery stores have these in the organic sections)
  • 1/3 cup of extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 onions, (finely chopped)
  • 2 cloves of garlic, (crushed and chopped)
  • 14 oz can of diced tomatoes (try to use Italian Roma or Plum tomatoes)
  • 1 tablespoon of tomato paste (purée)
  • 3 tablespoons of fresh Italian flat leaf parsley (chopped)
  • 1 tablespoon of fresh oregano (chopped)
  • 1 teaspoon of sugar
  • 4 1/2 ounces of mozzarella cheese (grated)

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Cut the eggplants in half lengthways keeping the stems attached. Score the flesh of the eggplant with a pairing knife in a crisscross pattern. Do not cut through the skin.

Heat half of the extra virgin olive oil in a large frying pan, add half of the eggplant and cook for 20 minutes on each side, or until the flesh is soft. Remove place on a paper towel covered plate. Repeat with remaining olive oil and eggplant.

Let the eggplant cool slightly. Scoop out the flesh and reserve the shelled skins.

Finely chop the flesh and heat the extra 1 Tbsp of olive oil and cook the onion over medium heat for 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds, then add the tomato, tomato paste, herbs, sugar and eggplant flesh and cook, stirring occasionally, over low heat for 8-10 minutes.

Arrange the eggplant shells in a lightly greased baking dish and spoon in the tomato/eggplant filling. Sprinkle with the mozzarella and bake for 5-10 minutes, or until the cheese has melted. Serve with a main meal, reserve and chill in the refrigerator and enjoy as a cool snack.

Enjoy this fresh dish with a fabulous 2013 Anselmi San Vincenzo Veneto I.G.T. Dry white wine (750ml) – $17.99
A blend of 80% Garganega (the principal grape of Soave), 10% Chardonnay, 10% Sauvignon Blanc. Light straw in color. Crisp and pure, with scents of minerals, lemon/lime, apricot and yellow apples. Medium bodied, dry and fresh, with notes of citrus fruit. This is an excellent wine to pair with some many summer foods and is an exceptional “porch pounder” as well. You really don’t need an excuse to enjoy this beautiful wine.

Recipe Courtesy of: Thompson Family Cookbook

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