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Eggplant Parmesan Parmigiana di Melanzane, I guess I’m a one in a million child who’s always loved it! Nona, knew just how to keep the sweetness in the eggplant and her sauce well, it was something to behold. Since I’ve been going through my old recipe box, I’ve found a lot of Nona’s recipes I thought I had lost forever! While she didn’t read or write English, she always had me by her side at the grocery and in the kitchen. I learned a lot there. I learned the approximate measure of the palm of her hand. I learned what a ‘pinch’ of anything was and I learned to taste food as I cooked it. (You could have the best recipe in the world, but if the seasonings are off, well then you’ve got nothin!)
Over the years, I adjusted the flavorings of the recipes I’d written down, and made some method adjustments for more modern kitchens and appliances. This Eggplant Parmesan, is no exception. You can of course make an ‘americanized’ version using breadcrumbs,like the 1000’s of recipes that exist, but this, this is the real deal. I guarantee, even if you haven’t ‘loved’ eggplant before you’re gonna love it now!
This is an ancient Sicilian dish which, in all cookbooks, is erroneously explained as obtaining its name from Parmesan cheese, which is one of the ingredients. Nothing could be further from the truth. The name “parmigiana” does not derive from that of the cheese but is the Italianization of the Sicilian dialectal word “parmiciana”, which refers to the slats of wood which compose the central part of a shutter and overlap in the same manner as the slices of eggplant in the dish. So there ya have it!
Traditionally, the recipe is made slicing the eggplant lengthwise to overlap in the baking dish (kind of like lasagna would), but I prefer to slice the eggplant round (mostly because I’m noshing the whole time I’m cooking) Either way, its a glorious dish and one you just HAVE TO TRY. Make your sauce without meat, a day or so in advance so the flavors have time to meld.Print Print