So incase you hadn't realized by now, eggplant is one of my favorite things in the world to eat!  And I love experimenting with it!  Today, I decided to make a more "healthy" version of eggplant parm.  So this recipe involves no frying and no breadcrumbs!  It does have some Béchamel sauce in it, which can be omitted if you choose.  What is béchamel you ask, it's a white creamy sauce with some French, Greek and Italian heritage.  One of the most delicious things about this technique is that cooks for a much longer time on a lower temperature to make it so tender, nice and yummy!!  So dig in!

No Fry Eggplant Parmesan

Serves 4

What you'll need:

1 eggplant

tomato sauce (homemade recipe

béchamel sauce (recipe below)

a handful of basil

1 ball of fresh mozzarella (shredded will work too if that's all you have)

a couple handfuls of parmesan cheese (please not green containers)

What you'll do:

Slice the eggplant lengthwise, salt and set to drain. (if you have questions, see here)  While it's setting, make the tomato sauce and béchamel sauce.  Here is how to make béchamel:

What you'll need:

2 1/2 Tbsp. butter

2 Tbsp. flour

2 cups milk

1 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. nutmeg

What you'll do:


In a medium saucepan, heat the butter over medium-low heat until melted. Add the flour and stir until smooth. Over medium-low heat, cook until the mixture turns a light, golden sandy color, about 6 to 7 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat the milk in a separate pot until just about to boil. Add the hot milk to the butter mixture 1/4 cup at a time, whisking continuously until very smooth. Bring to a boil. Cook 10 minutes, stirring constantly, then remove from heat. Season with salt and nutmeg, and set aside to cool until ready to use.  The sauce will turn very thick.

Ok, back to the assembly!  So preheat the oven to 300 degrees.  

Take a 8 x 8 baking dish and dollop a large spoonful of tomato sauce in and spread around the bottom to cover.  Lay one layer of eggplant in next.  Spoon a couple teaspoons of tomato sauce on top of the eggplant and spread around.  Add a few basil leaves and then drizzle some béchamel sauce all over.  Add another layer of eggplant and repeat.  The top layer should be the béchamel sauce.  Cover with foil and cook in the oven for about 2 hours or until the eggplant is fork tender.  When it is tender, top with the mozzarella and parmesan cheeses.  Stick it back in the oven under the broiler until the cheese melts.

Serve warm alone or with some pasta : )

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