Eggplant Romano

Jo Zimny

By
@EmilyJo

I don't eat dairy as a rule, but sometimes you need a little to enhance a dish. Today I'm using Pecorino Romano cheese in stead of Parmesan. Romano is sheep cheese, not cow cheese which I prefer. This recipe takes a bit of time to do so set aside a few hours as there are a few steps.


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Serves:

4-6

Prep:

40 Min

Ingredients

2 Tbsp
sangria (or red wine)
1 medium
onion, chopped
3-5 large
cloves garlic, minced or pressed
1 medium
bell pepper, chopped
fresh ground black pepper, to taste
1-28 oz can(s)
diced fire roasted tomatoes
1/2-6 oz. can(s)
tomato paste
1 pinch
course salt
2 tsp
dried basil
2 tsp
dried oregano
1/4 Tbsp
dried thyme
2 tsp
dried parsley
1 large
eggplant
additional salt to salt the eggplant
1/4-1/2 c
chicken broth
1 c
home made breadcrumbs
3/4 c
almond mozzarella cheese, coursely grated
1/2 c
fresh grated romano cheese

Directions Step-By-Step

1
Heat the wine in a large pot and cook the onion over medium heat for about 6-8 minutes. Stir is several times through out the cooking process until the onions are soft. Add in the garlic and bell pepper and cook, stir until tender.
2
Add the black pepper and canned tomatoes and tomato paste. Cover and cook over low heat for 5-10 minutes. Stir in the salt and simmer gently uncovered until the sauce gets thick. This can take about 1 hour. Add the dried herbs and simmer for a few more minutes. Season with additional salt and then remove from the heat.
3
Peel the eggplant. Cut into 1/2" slices. Salt both sides of the peeled egg plant and then put into a colander and press. I used a dinner plate and a brick, it worked very well. Do this for at least 30 minutes or longer. I let mine sit for longer. Put a dish under it and let the moisture seep out. I got a a fair amount of liquid out of eggplant.
4
When the eggplant is drained run cold water over it and then put on a paper towel and pat dry top and bottom.
5
At this point preheat your oven to 350'F. Spray a large baking sheet with non-stick oil spray and. Dip the dried eggplant into the chicken broth then coat both sides with the breadcrumbs. Put on your baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes until the crumbs are golden brown and the eggplant is tender, about 30 minutes.
6
Get an 8x8" casserole dish and spray it with the non-stick spray and spread a thin layer of the sauce on the bottom. Arrange 1/2 the eggplant slices on top of the sauce. Sprinkle about 1/3 of the mozzarella over the eggplant. Top with a thicker layer of sauce then the first layer and sprinkle on 1/2 the Romano cheese on that. Repeat until you use up all the ingredients ending with the Romano Cheese.
7
Bake, covered for about 30 minutes or until bubbling. Uncover and scatter more cheese on top if you wish, I just left it as is and baked it for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and let it sit for a few minutes before serving.
8
Enjoy!