Succulent and sweet, Kitchen Wisdom Gluten Free Eggplant Parmigiana is soft and exquisite. Wonderful as the main course, serve with salad and enjoy. Eggplant Parmigiana is prepared by so many families whom originated in Southern Italy; it is also prepared in so many ways. The texture of the coating tends to be the greatest variant. In my family, and many families I grew up with, the eggplant is first dredged in a dusting of flour and then fried. Some families dredge the eggplant in flour and egg. It does seem to be an American conversion to use a thick breadcrumb coating, commonly seen in Italian-American food markets and restaurants here in the states. I enjoy the flavor of cici (garbanzo/chickpea) flour as a coating; however, gluten free white rice flour can be used just as easily. Buon Apetito!
1 8-10 inch Italian Eggplant (or 2 long and thin Asian eggplants), Slice 1/8– ¼ inch
thick, lightly salt both sides, place in colander (see preparing eggplant at bottom.)
1/3 cup gluten free Cici (Garbanzo bean/Chickpea) flour
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil, 1 tablespoon at a time
2 cups Tomato Sauce (a thick sauce, too thin will make the eggplant watery)
2-3 tablespoons Parmesan Grated Cheese
½ – ¾ pound shredded Mozzarella Cheese
6” x 9” Baking Dish
Prepare & Press the Eggplant: Press the Eggplant (Remove Bitters from the Eggplant): If you use a small Asian eggplant – this step is unnecessary. If you use a standard American Globe Eggplant, this step is absolutely necessary. Slice eggplant into ¼ inch thick rounds. Place large colander in sink. Line eggplant in colander in this way: a few at the bottom, lightly salt, a few more, lightly salt – until you have used up all the eggplant. Place a plate with weight at the top and allow eggplant’s bitters to press out. Leave for an hour or more. Remove dish, use paper towel to soak up brownish liquid (the bitters). Lay the eggplant slices flat on paper towel and place aside until ready to fry. See further Eggplant Prep, Dredge & Cooking Description and photos here.
Place flour in a shallow bowl. Place paper towel over cookie sheet or plates and set aside.
Dredge the Eggplant: Using a fork, dredge each side of a single slice of eggplant in the flour, create an even coating. Gently tap off excess flour by holding the slice perpendicular to plate.
Cook the Eggplant: Add 1 tablespoon of oil to the warming frypan. Place the heat on medium high. One needs only enough oil to line the inside of the pan. Eggplant will act like a sponge, so be sure to not place too much oil in the pan. When the oil is hot enough to sizzle, but not smoke, add the eggplant and place the slices in the pan with room in between them. The spacing allows air circulation which contributes to even and thorough cooking. Cook the eggplant for approximately one to one and a half minutes on each side. Once cooked, the heat will make some of the eggplant get a dome shape and bubble along the sides, this means they are done. Also look for the skin beginning to curl at the edges as a sign of being cooked. Transfer the eggplant to paper towel lined cookie sheet or plate. Continue to cook the eggplant in this manner until they are all cooked. Allow eggplant to cool completely.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Use a 6” x 9” baking dish and spoon enough tomato sauce to lightly coat the bottom of the dish. Line the bottom with the eggplant, allow them to slightly overlap.
Sprinkle eggplant with a light to moderate dusting of grated cheese. Cover with a layer of shredded mozzarella cheese.
Spoon some tomato sauce to lightly cover the cheese. Place another layer of eggplant over the sauce. Repeat all the previous steps. There should be enough for a triple layer of eggplant, topping the final layer with mozzarella cheese.
Cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes, then remove foil and continue to bake for another 10 minutes or until bubbling at the sides. Remove from oven and remove cover. Allow to sit uncovered for at least 10 minutes before serving.
Tastes delicious hot or warm. Serve with a salad.
“Eggplant Parmigiana” by Liz Conforti, Forget What You Know About Wheat(c) 2015
Serve with Kitchen Gluten Free Recipes:
Spinach with Garlic & Olive Oil
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