i was getting ready to send this recipe to my mom-in-law and thought, hey, i should add it to my blog because it is super easy and super delish! mike loves eggplant and i hate the hassle of frying it. fortunatley, my pal martha had a solution for me. what a gal! now, i made her eggplant, but not her sauce. i kind of made up my own sauce using mostly parts from the baked ziti recipe and then i drained it so it would be super chunky. since my sauce had sausage it was a pretty hearty meal without any pasta. or you can buy a good quality chunky sauce! i only used one eggplant. 2 eggplants for our little family would have us eating eggplant for weeks! but reagan loved it and ate it all up. she isn't a fan of red sauce, but with the chunkiness of it and lack of pasta she didn't seem to mind.
2 large eggs
3/4 cup plain breadcrumbs
3/4 cup finely grated parmesan cheese, plus
2 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese, for topping
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
2 large eggplants, peeled and sliced into 1/2-inch rounds (2 1/2 pounds total)
6 cups store-bought chunky tomato sauce or homemade chunky tomato sauce (see recipe below) 1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
Preheat oven to 375°. Brush 2 baking sheets with oil; set aside. In a wide, shallow bowl, whisk together eggs and 2 tablespoons water. In another bowl, combine breadcrumbs, 3/4 cup Parmesan, oregano, and basil; season with salt and pepper.
Dip eggplant slices in egg mixture, letting excess drip off, then dredge in breadcrumb mixture, coating well; place on baking sheets. Bake until golden brown on bottom, 20 to 25 minutes. Turn slices; continue baking until browned on other side, 20 to 25 minutes more. Remove from oven; raise oven heat to 400°.
Spread 2 cups sauce in a 9-by-13-inch baking dish. Arrange half the eggplant in dish; cover with 2 cups sauce, then 1/2 cup mozzarella. Repeat with remaining eggplant, sauce, and mozzarella; sprinkle with remaining 2 tablespoons Parmesan. Bake until sauce is bubbling and cheese is melted, 15 to 20 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.
Note: To make Chunky Tomato Sauce: In a medium saucepan, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium heat. Cook 1 small diced onion and 2 minced garlic cloves, stirring frequently, until translucent, 2 to 4 minutes. Crush 2 cans whole tomatoes (28 ounces each) into pan; add 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until thickened, 15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.