Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Mike's Cooking~Eggplant Parmesan

Farmer's Markets are just like grocery stores. Lauren loves them both. I think we went about 7 different farmer's markets when I visited Lauren in Australia. Anyway, I do have to say that they aren't that bad. Mostly because they have food that you can buy (and eat) right there. Lauren and I had these Greek skewers of lamb and chicken. They were great. We also had ice cream from one of the dairies. Anyway, we ended up buying some eggplant, which I almost never use. Lauren requested that I make her Eggplant Parmesan without that much cheese. Is it really eggplant parmesan if there is no cheese?
We bought a humongous eggplant for $1 at the Urbana Farmer's market.
I skinned and sliced it, then dipped it in egg, and then panko with italian seasoning, and garlic salt in it. I had decided to try and be fancy, and do something different from the normal italian breadcrumbs and baking method.

Then it was on to frying. I pan fried the eggplant. I would have deepfried it, but we didn't have a lot of oil, and given the uneven nature of the stovetop, it might have been dangerous. By uneven, I mean that the burner is acctually at about a 15 degree angle. The first pieces were way too oily since I didn't get the pan hot enough. Eggplant is kind of like mushrooms, in that they will soak up anything you put it in the pan with. Once the oil got hot enough, it wasn't too bad.
I usually make my tomato sauces a little bit spicy. Today, I decided that something a little sweet would be better. I caramelized onions, added garlic, then added some kind of Hunts canned sauce as a base, and added other stuff to it. I accidentally put too much sugar (I was shooting for a teaspoon for a hint of sweetness, and the container slipped :)), so I had to add a whole bunch of parsley at the end, because it was all I had left to add.
Here's a picture of the finished product. You can see the uneven heating, especially in the center piece. We put a little bit of shredded mozzarella on top, then put the marinara sauce on, and ate. It was pretty good. Nothing I'd go bragging about, but a quick and tasty dinner.

What I was really proud of that night was the corn. We bought about 3 ears of corn as well, and I cleaned them, and soaked them in teriyaki sauce for about 3 hours. I seared them in a pan with olive oil, then put them back in the marinade, and finished them in the microwave. It was really good. Lauren said it was way better than the Bon Dance corn, which is a really big compliment.


Lori said...

Good job Mike! I always enjoy parmesan eggplant. :)

Diana said...

Ooooh, I made my fried eggplant with panko too!

Next time I'll try adding garlic though, that sounds great.

Mike said...

Thanks Lori & Diana! It did taste good for a vegetable. Diana, your food looks fantastic!