Filling. Layered. Homely. Satisfying.
By the way, all the food painting artwork is available to own in the Official Art Store.
Apparently eggplant parma (as it's known here in Australia) is almost always on the menu as a vegetarian option in Melbourne restaurants and is almost always hated by vegetarians at said restaurants, apparently due to it's overexposure. This is odd as there is only one time I've encountered it on a menu, and I was so impressed I went home and recreated it. This is a no-bake version, which is a lot less all-the-flavours-slopped-together, and quicker, than the baked version.
dash olive oil
1 onion, diced
400g tomato, pureed or diced
20g fresh basil, roughly chopped
1/4 cup red or white wine
500g spinach or 250g chard, chopped
1 or more tablespoons butter
500g eggplant, cut into 1cm thick slices
6 cloves garlic, minced
salt to taste
1/2 cup water
grated tasty or parmesan cheese for topping
Prepare the potatoes:
Boil and mash potato with milk and butter or as you like it.
Make the tomato sauce:
Soften onion in oil.
Add tomato, basil and wine. Simmer for as long as you dare without allowing it to catch on the bottom.
Prepare the spinach:
Steam it, boil it or blanch it. Whichever way you like it.
Fry the eggplant slices:
Melt butter in a large flat frypan.
Place eggplant slices in the pan cut side up if there is a choice.
Cover with minced garlic and salt generously. Do try and keep the garlic on the eggplant so it doesn't burn.
Fry eggplant until golden on the first side. Add more butter if needed.
Flip slices and add water to help soften and cook eggplant.
Continue cooking until all water has evaporated and the eggplant is soft all through and fried golden brown on both sides. Add more butter if needed.
Make a ring of mash on each plate.
Fill the ring with spinach.
Cover with tomato sauce.
Place eggplant slices on top and sprinkle with cheese.
Makes 4 meals.
Need help with conversions? Download this handy dandy pdf of cooking conversion charts for every cooking measuring system I could find. It should make your life easier.