Adapted from this NYTimes recipe via Jamie Oliver
For the eggplant parmesan:
- 3 medium eggplants or 6 small eggplants, about 3 1/2 to 4 lbs. cut crosswise into 1/2-inch slices
- olive oil
- kosher salt
- freshly cracked black pepper
- 2 cups fresh breadcrumbs
- 1 cup (3 ounces roughly) freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
- red pepper tomato sauce (recipe below, or whatever tomato sauce you love)
For the tomato-basil sauce:
- 2 red bell peppers, stemmed and seeded, diced to yield about 2 cups
- 2 beefsteak tomatoes, diced to yield about 2 cups
- kosher salt and pepper to taste
- 1/4 cup loosely packed fresh basil leaves
- 4 tablespoons butter, room temperature
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Line two baking sheets — I love these extra-large baking sheets for this — with parchment (if you wish) then drizzle some oil over top and spread out with your hand. Lay the eggplant slices in a single layer. Season generously with salt and pepper. Flip the slices, season with salt and pepper. Drizzle more olive oil over top. Bake until golden brown, 15 to 20 minutes. Remove pan from oven, flip slices, bake for 15 more minutes. Set aside. Reduce oven temperature to 400 degrees.
- Meanwhile, toss the 2 cups bread crumbs with 1/3 cup of the grated parmesan cheese, 1/4 cup olive oil, and salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.
- Into a 9×13-inch baking dish, spoon a small amount of sauce, then a single layer of eggplant, then a thin layer of parmesan. Repeat the layering until all of the eggplant and cheese has been used, ending with a little sauce. Top with the bread crumb mixture.
- Bake until eggplant mixture is bubbly and top is golden, 25 minutes or so depending on size of pan and thickness of layers. Remove from heat and allow to rest for 5 minutes before serving. Recipe can also be reheated.
To make the sauce: Place peppers and tomatoes in a medium-sized saucepan or pot. Pour in 1/2 cup water and turn heat to high. Season with 1 teaspoon kosher salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a simmer, then turn heat down to medium high. Set a timer for 25 minutes. After about five minutes, the tomatoes and peppers will begin to release their juices, and the whole mixture should be bubbling. Adjust the heat if necessary so that the mixture stays at a constant bubble — medium to medium-high should do it. Stir every five minutes or so to make sure the tomatoes and peppers are not sticking to the bottom of the pan. If they are, add water by the 1/4 cup.
When the peppers and tomatoes are tender and nearly all of the liquid has evaporated and the tomatoes and peppers are beginning to stick to pot, add the basil, butter, and oil to the pot, give it a stir, then transfer the contents of the pot to a food processor or blender. Blend until smooth. Taste. Adjust seasoning with more salt and pepper as necessary.
- Prep Time: 40 minutes
- Cook Time: 25 minutes
- Category: Dinner
- Method: Oven
- Cuisine: Italian, American
Keywords: eggplant, parmesan, easy, no-fuss, tomato, sauce, homemade, bell peppers