Parmigiana di Melanzane

This morning I woke up and thought, “I want Parmigiana di Melanzane.” Okay, great, thanks, Sascha.
The most popular dish in Sicily is Pasta alla Norma, but this one is close.
It’s based on Aubergines, eggplants for my American friends, and tomatoes.
Yes, it’s not like my favorite dish from the island, but we all need change.

Parmigiana di Melanzane

When I woke up with the idea, I wanted to cook it. But someone said, “This is a Sicilian dish. I am Sicilian. Feel free to assist.” so, well, I am doing my best as an assistant.

The ingredients are simple – it’s Sicily, after all. The preparation is simple, too, but a few time-consuming steps are involved.
First, it deals with the Aubergines. They are almost inedible when raw, so step one is to slice them and prep a bowl with water and a lot of salt.

Parmigiana salting the Aubergine

Leave them inside for at least an hour. We went shopping for some ingredients we forgot, and, of course, wine.
We started with two Aubergines, so we needed two bottles of Passata. In case you don’t know this brand, it’s excellent.
There are better brands, but they are more expensive, too, but Cirio is always a good one. Pasta, pesto, Passata – whatever.

Passata

Put it in a pot and add sugar, salt, pepper, basil, and a little garlic. Heat it until it boils, then lower the temperature and let it simmer.

Passata with ingredients

A little later, heat vegetable oil in a big pan and fry the Aubergine slices from both sides until they get a little brown. Afterward, the fat saturates, and the other cuts are done faster. The first batch will take five minutes on each side.
At the same time, start boiling two eggs for ten minutes.

Parmigiana frying the Aubergine

This is what it should look like:

Fried Aubergine


Now pre-heat an oven to 200 degrees Celsius, and put some Passata in a baking pan:

Start with Passata

Add the first layer of Aubergines:

Layer Aubergines

Add mozzarella and parmesan:

Adding Parmesan and Mozarella

Boiled eggs in slices:

Boiled Eggs on the Parmigiana

And ham. I found ham with rosemary but any cooked ham will do:

Ham with Rosemary

Repeat with another layer of Aubergines, and sauce, and add more cheese on top:

Parmigiana ready for the oven

That’s it! Put the pan into the oven and bake it for around 20 minutes.
Now it’s time to serve it.
I bought a bottle of Cacciata Toscana – a medium red, but even the usual Sangiovese should work.

Parmigiana di Melanzane

It is not your usual dish, but nonetheless tasty. Give it a try. The preparation takes time but isn’t difficult. Enjoy!

Ingredients

  • 2 Aubergines
  • 750 ml Passata
  • 2 boiled eggs
  • 1 Mozarella
  • 150ish gr Parmesan
  • 100 gr cooked ham
  • Fresh basil
  • Salt, pepper, sugar, garlic

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