Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Eggplant Parmesan...Cooking Light style

I've mentioned before that in our house I have to get creative with working vegetables into our meals since my husband isn't a big fan. He is however, a huge fan of chicken parmesan so when I came across this recipe for eggplant parmesan from Cooking Light, I thought it was definitely worth a try.

This lighter version of a fried classic was rather ambitious for a weeknight meal. The process of simmering the sauce, soaking the eggplant, then broiling the eggplant before the whole meal goes into the oven to bake requires some planning ahead! But the end result was very tasty! We had our eggplant parmesan over whole wheat pasta and it was definitely hearty and filling! This recipe makes a ton (even when I halved it) but it holds up well in the refrigerator for leftovers the next day. I also recommend letting it cool for longer than the suggested 5 minutes in the recipe below...unless you like your food boiling lava hot.

Eggplant Parmesan
(Source: Cooking Light, October 1995)

1/2 cup dry white wine
1 tablespoon dried basil
1 tablespoon dried oregano
4 (8-ounce) cans no-salt-added tomato sauce
1 (28-ounce) can no-salt-added whole tomatoes, undrained and chopped
1 (6-ounce) can tomato paste
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 (1-pound) eggplants, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch slices
1/4 cup water
3 egg whites, lightly beaten
1 1/4 cups Italian-seasoned breadcrumbs
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Vegetable cooking spray
3 cups (12 ounces) shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese

1. Combine first 7 ingredients in a large saucepan; bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer, uncovered, 20 minutes.

2. Place eggplant in a large bowl; add water to cover, and let stand 30 minutes. Drain well; blot dry with paper towels. Combine 1/4 cup water and egg whites in a shallow bowl. Combine breadcrumbs and Parmesan cheese; stir well. Dip eggplant in egg white mixture, and dredge in breadcrumb mixture.

3. Place half of eggplant on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray, and broil 5 minutes on each side or until browned. Repeat procedure with remaining eggplant. Set eggplant aside.
Spread half of tomato mixture in bottom of a 13 x 9-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Arrange half of eggplant over sauce; top with half of mozzarella cheese. Repeat layers with remaining sauce, eggplant, and cheese.

4. Bake at 350° for 30 minutes or until bubbly. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

Nutritional Information
Calories: 298 (26% from fat)
Fat: 8.5g (sat 5g,mono 2.2g,poly 0.4g)
Protein: 19.2g
Carbohydrate: 38.8g
Fiber: 2.6g
Cholesterol: 27mg
Iron: 2.8mg
Sodium: 818mg
Calcium: 422mg

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