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Learn How to Make Delicious Eggplant Parmesan With a Unique Twist

Published: July 8, 2024
This recipe can be made quickly using high-quality pre-made tomato or pizza sauce, or you can create your own from fresh tomatoes for an authentic taste. (Image: Manos Angelakis/LuxuryWeb Magazine)

Published with permission from LuxuryWeb Magazine

Barbara’s Eggplant Parmigiano (or Eggplant Parmesan) puts a delightful spin on the traditional Italian dish by blending classic flavors with a unique touch. This recipe can be made quickly using high-quality pre-made tomato or pizza sauce, or you can create your own from fresh tomatoes for an authentic taste.

This dish is a staple in our kitchen, often paired with garlic bread made from a stale baguette — a great way to avoid wasting good bread — and a generous glass of Chianti Classico or Amarone della Valpolicella.

(Image: Manos Angelakis/LuxuryWeb Magazine)

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  • 2 medium-size Italian (globe) eggplants
  • Flour for coating
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil or Canola Oil for frying
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • ½ brick of Galbani Whole Milk Classic melt Mozzarella Cheese (firm and melts to a toasty golden brown) or similar
  • Pepper to taste

Ingredients for homemade tomato sauce:

  • 1 lb. fresh, skinless tomatoes (Rutgers Heirloom Tomato preferred) or San Marzano-style canned tomatoes, crushed
  • 1 medium white onion
  • 2 to 4 large cloves of garlic (to taste)
  • 8 sprigs of basil or flat-leaf parsley, chopped, stalks removed
  • Crushed red pepper flakes (to taste)
  • Additional flat-leaf parsley to sprinkle on top of the finished dish
  • 2 tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil for cooking
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  1. Cut eggplants into rounds, about ¾ inch thick, and sprinkle with salt. Place on a dishtowel or double paper towels and let drain for about an hour.

  2. For homemade sauce, heat olive oil in a saucepan and cook onion until translucent, about 5-6 minutes. Add garlic and cook for another minute to release its aroma. Then add tomatoes, season with salt and pepper, and add basil or parsley. Sprinkle in a few crushed red pepper flakes for a kick. Simmer for about 30 minutes, adding water as necessary. Remove from heat to cool, then puree in a food processor or food mill to a smooth consistency.

  3. Meanwhile, pat eggplants dry with paper towels and lightly dredge in flour. Heat oil in a large frying pan over medium to high heat, taking care not to let the oil smoke. Add a single layer of floured eggplant at a time, cooking until golden brown on one side, then turning to repeat on the other side. Avoid overcooking. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate to drain excess oil.

  4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and spread a few spoonfuls of sauce into a wide, shallow baking pan. Cover the sauce with a layer of eggplant, sprinkle with grated Parmesan cheese, and add a thin layer of thinly sliced mozzarella. Repeat layers of sauce, eggplant, and Parmesan, ending with a layer of sauce, a generous coating of grated Parmesan, and topped with thin slices of mozzarella.

  5. Bake for 45 minutes or until the mozzarella is nicely browned on top. Garnish with fresh chopped parsley and serve piping hot.

If short on time, a high-quality commercial sauce such as Rao’s or Nanina’s can be used instead of homemade. Both are nearly as good as homemade and save valuable kitchen time.

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