Pictures by – Jill Froberg
- 1 large eggplant (about 1 ½ pounds), sliced into ½-inch thick rounds (12 to 14 slices)
- 2 large eggs
- ⅔ cup plain panko bread crumbs
- 2 teaspoons dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- cooking oil spray
- 2 cups homemade tomato sauce (or Rao’s brand)
- 8 ounces fresh mozzarella cheese, sliced thinly into as many slices as your eggplant
- 1 cup fresh basil, finely chopped
- Line 2 baking sheets with a double layer of paper towels and spread the eggplant slices among the sheets evenly. Liberally salt the eggplant slices, using about a teaspoon total of salt, and let them sit at room temperature for 45 minutes to an hour. Using fresh paper towels, wipe the tops of the eggplant to remove excess salt and firmly press to release any remaining liquid. Dry on both sides and transfer to a plate. Wipe the baking sheets and line them with parchment paper or aluminum foil and spray well with cooking oil.
- Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. In a medium bowl, beat the eggs. In another medium shallow bowl, combine the panko, oregano, basil, garlic powder, salt, and pepper.
- Dip one slice of eggplant into the egg, coating both sides, and then press ONE side into the bread crumbs. Transfer to the prepared baking sheet. Repeat the process with all remaining slices.
- Spray the tops of the eggplant slices well with cooking oil and bake until the eggplant is soft and the crust is crispy, about 15 minutes. Remove the pans from the oven and spoon a heaping tablespoon of sauce on each, followed by a slice of mozzarella. Return the pan to the oven and bake until the cheese is melted, 3 to 5 minutes. Top with fresh basil and serve.
Recipe courtesy of Andie Mitchell – Visit her website/blog with the link below