nutrition facts set for side dish serving
Things to assemble:
1 T olive oil
1 medium onion
4 cloves garlic
2 (15 oz) cans or two pounds tomatoes
1/4 cup fresh basil
2 T parsley
1/4 t black pepper
1 large eggplant
2 T grapeseed oil
12 oz fresh mozzarella
2 T Parmesan
What to do first:
Preheat the oven to 350 F. Spray cooking spray in a casserole dish.
Mince the garlic, rinse and chop the tomatoes or open the two cans, rinse and tear the basil, rinse and chop the parsley. Slice the mozzarella and measure the Parmesan. Set everything aside in bowls or on plates so they are ready to use without fussing about.
Making the sauce:
Place the 1 T olive oil in a large skillet. When the oil begins to shimmer, add the onions and saute for about 4-5 minutes or until soft. Add the garlic and saute another 2 minutes. Add the tomatoes, half the basil, and season to your taste. Simmer uncovered for about 30 minutes. Correct seasonings and set aside in a bowl. Clean the skillet for the next step.
What to do next:
Rinse and cut off the zucchini ends. Then cut them in half so you have two fully round but short zucchini sticks. Repeat with the other zucchini. I'll wait here..... Now cut the zucchini lengthwise in half, then cut each half in half. You will end up with 16 slices of zucchini.
Return the skillet to the stove medium high heat and add the grapeseed oil. Make sure the oil is very hot as this is critical for making non-oily eggplant.
While that is heating up, rinse and cut the ends off the eggplant. Stand it up and make vertical slices about 1/2 inch thick. You should be done with this by the time the oil is hot. Quickly fry the eggplant in the oil. If the eggplant gets soggy, your oil was not hot enough. Fry in batches, turning to brown each side. Drain on paper towels.
Add more oil if necessary and fry the zucchini in the same manner. Set aside on paper towels.
How to Assemble and Bake:
Layer half the eggplant and zucchini in the casserole. Top with half the sauce, half the mozzarella, and a bit of the remaining parsley and basil. Repeat. Top the whole with the Parmesan. A few more basil leaves here are makes a very pretty presentation.
Bake for about 30 minutes or until nice and bubbly. Allow to set for 10 minutes out of the oven and then serve.