Eggplant parm on the grill
My mom’s eggplant parmesan is the best. Her sauce is so good and she always uses mozzarella from the east coast. Side note: you’d think she’s smuggling illegal goods the way she packs her van full of 50lbs of Italian sausage and fresh mozzarella in water… she’s even planning to build a larger pantry in her new condo solely so she’ll have room for all of the cans of tomatoes she brings back from New York. I still don’t know why those cans are so great but I’ll take them when she offers them. And did you know that there is a completely different shape of fusili sold on the east coast? This is what fusili looks like in New York (check google.com/reader if you can’t see the picture).
I digress. My mother doesn’t make eggplant parmesan often because frying stinks up the house (wait until her new condo neighbors smells her eggplant when they move in!). I’ve tried to make eggplant in many different ways because my mom is right. It sucks to stink up your house frying eggplant. Most recently I attempted to use the grill.
I started by slicing up eggplant (so hard to make all my slices even!) and tossed them on the grill. The eggplant grills pretty quickly and it’s easy to get grill marks on them (course who cares because those marks are about to be smothered in sauce in a minute).
I began layering the eggplant in a shallow, oven safe plate. I added a layer of sauce, a layer of mozzarella, and a generous portion of fresh basil from my own plentiful plants. I was able to top it with another layer of eggplant, sauce and cheese.
To eat immediately I would have put the dish immediately in the oven for about 45 minutes at 350 degrees (approximately). Typically I keep it covered and then uncover it at the end. It may need less time in the oven if the sauce is warm and if the eggplant is fresh off the grill.
The problem though is that I put this dish in the freezer to save for later. I defrosted the dish eventually and tossed it in the oven for about an hour but I think freezing the eggplant made it rubbery. While it was still pretty good, I don’t suggest freezing it. The last time I grilled the eggplant for parmesan I actually grilled it two days in advance and didn’t even layer the dish until just before I cooked it. This worked much better. Hope you can do this yourself and enjoy!!