Who’s up for a veggie night? If you’re doubting veggie night because the word “veggie” doesn’t sound like a delight, I’m sure eggplant parmesan will change your mind! Eggplant parmesan, also known as eggplant parmigiana or eggplant parm, is just so delectably good, you’ll even forget it’s made up of vegetables. Everyone can enjoy a good eggplant parmesan, and an even greater bonus, it has a lot of health benefits too! So, here’s everything you need to know about perfecting your eggplant parm recipe!
For a pan of eggplant parmesan, you can bake it in the oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 25-30 minutes, until the cheese starts bubbling and the casserole looks golden brown. This result is a crunchy eggplant parm. If you prefer softer eggplant parm, cook them a littler longer for around 35 to 40 minutes.
350 degrees is already just the perfect temperature for cooking your eggplant parmesan. But, if you’re looking to create a crispier eggplant parm or just to quicken the cooking, you can also raise the temperature to 425 degrees which would only take 20 minutes to bake the eggplant parm. Though, this might need more of your attention during the baking process so as to make sure your eggplant won’t get overcooked and soggy. The key is just cooking your eggplant to your preference. Some want crunchier eggplants which should take a shorter amount of time while others prefer softer eggplants which should take just a little longer.
Preparing eggplant parmesan may be intimidating at first, because of the steps and layers. But, don’t worry! You’ll get the hang of it quicker than you think! And here’s an easy eggplant parm recipe which I like to use.
To start, you first need to prepare the eggplant by slicing them into circles and sprinkling them with salt.
You should also allow them to sit for at least 2-3 hours to remove the extra moisture and also remove some of the eggplant’s bitterness. After a few hours, rinse the eggplant and pat them dry.
Then, you have to prepare the sauce and the breading for the eggplant parm. For the sauce, you can just make a simple marinara by sauteing onion and garlic, then adding tomatoes, basil, oregano, and some seasonings like pepper, salt, and chili flakes. Then for the breading, you simply coat your eggplant in flour, then with egg, followed by a mix of breadcrumbs and parmesan, in that order, always. Other options for breading include toasting your panko breadcrumbs before using them for coating.
Then, you have to bake your coated eggplant rounds just until it’s brown and crisp, which takes about 10 minutes per side.
Once they’re baked, you just have to layer them! Sauce, eggplant, mozzarella, and parmesan, then, repeat! And finally, end with sauce and a sprinkle of cheese.
Pop the eggplant parmesan in the oven for 3 to 4 more minutes until the cheese bubbles, then you’re done!
Eggplant parmesan is just heavenly good. Though I have to admit, it can take quite some time and patience to finish the dish to perfection. But, here are things you can do to serve plates faster.
If you’re okay with eggplants that are firmer in texture, skipping the salting will be fine for you! This can quicken things up since you don’t have to wait for 3 hours for the eggplant to finish the salting process.
Another thing that can make things quick would be making your sauce beforehand. You can buy a pre-made marinara sauce, or you can make your own beforehand and store it in a jar for whenever you want to use it.
If you want things to be really quick and easy on the actual veggie night, you can already do as much as layering your ingredients in a pan, covering it, and refrigerating your casserole the day before. Then, you can just remove it from the refrigerator an hour before baking it. Bake it, then serve!
With a good eggplant parmesan, veggie night will surprisingly be everyone’s favorite food night. It’s just irresistibly good! But, if you want to take it, even more, up a notch, here are things you can do to make your perfect eggplant parmesan even more perfect.
Herbs, especially basil, could make everything so much better. For this, you can do a layer of mozzarella, parmesan, and basil leaves. If you have other herbs you like, you can add them too.
While mozzarella and parmesan are already good enough, if you’re a cheese lover, you can add more types of cheese to your casserole. A good option would be ricotta!
One thing that can tie everything together would be side dishes! Some sides that go great with eggplant parm would be garlic bread, broccolini, or zucchinis!
Veggie Night would be incomplete without a really good and scrumptious eggplant parmesan. I hope this can help you perfect your eggplant parmesan and just make every veggie night beautiful and memorable! Have an eggplant-astic meal!