Sunday, June 17, 2012

Fried Eggplant with Marinara Sauce

1 15 oz. can crushed tomatoes
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 handful chopped fresh thyme, oregano, and basil (or 2 tablespoons dried herb blend)
salt to taste

Saute garlic in olive oil for about 5 minutes on medium low heat, taking care not to burn it. Add remaining ingredients and simmer for 15-20 minutes. This sauce tastes great with any Italian-style dish.

This recipe is enough for 1 average sized fruit - about 6-7 inches. Adjust accordingly for however many you have. It also works well for green tomatoes, zucchini, summer squash, mozzarella cheesesticks (put the cheese in the freezer for 30 minutes first), etc. Basiclly, it works for anything you wanna bread , fry and dunk in sauce!

Dredging Station

Prepare 3 separate dredges:

1/3 cup all purpose flour
salt and pepper

1 egg, beaten

1/3 cup panko bread crumbs
1 tablespoon dried Italian herbs
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt

1 eggplant, sliced in 1/2 inch slices

Coat both sides of the eggplant in flour, followed by the egg, then bread crumb mixture. Be sure to press firmly to ensure even coating of each layer. Place slices on a rack to set up for about 5-10 minutes. Heat  about 1/4 inch of canola (or any high-heat) oil in a cast iron skillet over med-high heat until it starts to ripple, but not smoke. Gently add eggplant to skillet, being sure not to overcrowd the pan. Cook for 2-4 minutes on each side, until lightly browned. You may have to adjust heat to prevent burning. Place on a rack or paper towels to drain. Dust with salt while hot and serve immediately or, if making large batches, keep in a warm oven until ready to serve.

This can also be made with zucchini or summer squash. For a healthier version...

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