Aubergine parmigiana is one of my all time favourite recipes. It can be a little time consuming to make as the aubergines must be pre-cooked, but it is absolutely worth it to get that melt-in-the-mouth consistency.
It’s ideal for a meal with friends as you can make it up to a day before and just shove it in the oven when your guests arrive, to be served up with salad or green beans, and some bread to mop up the juices!
3 large aubergines
500g jar of tomato pasta sauce, or home-made tomato sauce
250g mozerella (the better the quality, the better the dish!)
50g parmesan shavings
Approx 20 fresh basil leaves
Handful of cherry tomatoes (optional)
olive oil, salt, pepper
Cut the aubergines lengthways into slices around 1/2 cm thick. Using a pastry brush, coat each side with olive oil. Heat up a large frying pan (you can do more than one pan at a time if you have the equipment and hob space!) and fry the aubergines on each side until they begin to brown, and are soft.
Keep the cooked aubergines under a plate until you have fried the lot and are ready to start layering.
Add a spoonful of the tomato sauce to a large oven-proof dish and spread to cover the bottom. Layer a third of the aubergines aubergines, a third of the sliced mozerella and half the tomato sauce, then repeat.
Finish with a final layer of aubergines and mozerella. Sprinkle the parmesan and basil leaves on top, with the halved tomatoes if using, and grind on a thin layer of pepper.
Cook for 30 – 40 minutes at 180 degrees C. You might want to put the dish on baking tray if it is up to the top, as the tomato sauce has a tendency to bubble over!
When serving, cut a square the size of the portion using a sharp knife then lift out of the dish with a wide spatula.