Let’s go a little vegetarian this week

This week we’re switching it up … kind of.

I’m finally bringing a vegetarian style recipe to y’all: eggplant parmesan. While this isn’t a vegan recipe it is friendly to our friends who don’t eat meat, a few of which I have myself.

I was in high school when my mom first introduced eggplant into my diet. I think she read about frying it up either in a magazine or from one of the many cooking shows she loves to watch. I think this was around the time she was trying to incorporate more vegetables into mine and my fathers diets because, let’s just say we weren’t the greatest at that. Oops.

Anyway she learned that we enjoyed eggplant and decided to try an eggplant parmesan. Needless to say I was hooked on it, continued to make it and have added my own twist to it.

Fast-forward to college, my roommate tried on numerous occasions to go vegetarian — however, I don’t think she ever truly succeeded. Anyway this became our one of our go-tos and, since moving out and living on my own, I still continue to cook this, occasionally adding it on top of pasta if I want it to be a little bit extra.

The one bad thing is it isn’t necessarily a “quick” meal. It’s super easy and simple but it takes around 45-50 minutes to completely and I’ve turned it more into a lasagna than a parm — but the idea is there, right?

Also tip for those who like me were using their hands to dunk the whatever is being breaded, small rubber tongs are a godsend. I tried using my larger tongs, however, they just didn’t workout right. I’ve found that the little tongs work the best for me, just some advice so you aren’t loosing half the bread crumbs on your fingers.

Ingredients …

1 eggplant

1 cup of bread crumbs

1 tablespoon of Italian seasoning

1 egg

A pinch of salt and pepper.

1 jar of traditional pasta sauce

2 cups of mozzarella cheese

1 cup of parmesan cheese

1/2 a cup of basil

Instructions …

Preheat the oven to 425 and in a bowl whisk together bread crumbs, Italian seasoning and salt and pepper. In a separate bowl whisk the eggs.

Take a glass baking dish and coat the bottom with some of the pasta sauce.

Cut the eggplant into inch thick slices then place in the egg then bread-crumb mixture. Make sure you have an even amount of eggplant. After breading the eggplant place in a glass baking dish, once you cover the dish or have half the eggplant placed add some pasta sauce and mozzarella on top of each slice. Cover each piece with another piece of eggplant.

Once all the eggplant is place top with another layer of sauce and mozzarella. Bake in the oven for around 30 minutes. Take out and top with parmesan and bake for another 10 minutes. Top with basil and enjoy!