By Emily Taylor
Chicken parmigiana is a delicious Italian-American dish, which contains essentially breaded chicken breast topped with tasty tomato sauce and mozzarella cheese. For those who like the taste of eggplants, a slight variation in the recipe can be done. The chicken is replaced with breaded eggplant slices.
This is served as the base for many different meals including sandwiches in which this base is served among two bread slices. It is also served with pasta, beef or pork as the base. This is one among the popular dishes served across different countries with minor variations to suit the taste.
In this guide let’s make a combination of Eggplant and chicken parmigiana in Tomato Basil sauce. First of all, be ready with the ingredients:
1. Medium sized eggplants (remove the skin and clean the eggplant, cut it lengthwise of about half an inch thickness. If the eggplant is large or full of seeds, set it in a strainer up to 15 to 30 minutes and then rinse it and pat dry.
2. Basil is a culinary herb, which is prominently featured in Italian dishes. It has a strong, pungent and a sweet smell. We would require few basil leaves for this recipe.
Let’s prepare the tasty Tomato sauce with garnished basil leaves.
· Olive oil – 1 tablespoon
· Butter – 3 to 4 tablespoons (based on requirement)
· Medium size Onion (chopped into fine pieces)– 1 cup
· Garlic cloves – 2 large, finely chopped
· Clear Chicken stock – 1.5 cups
· Canned tomatoes – 1-2 (depending on whether you like the taste of tomatoes)
· Liquid Tomato puree – 2 Cups
· Torn basil – for taste
· Gogi breadcrumbs – 1.5 Cups
· Panko breadcrumbs – 1 cup
· Grated extra hard cheese – 1 cup
· Lemon – 1
· Beaten eggs – 3
· Chicken breasts – 2 split to form 4 large cutlets and then crushed to get a thin layer without bone or skin
· Semi-soft fresh cheese – Couple of slices as per the No of sandwiches you are planning to prepare.
· Parsley flat leaf, finely chopped – 1/4 cup
· Thyme leaves – 2 tablespoons
· Flour, to form a layer on the sandwich
· Oil sufficient for shallow fry of sandwich
· Salt and pepper powder to taste
How to Prepare?
1. Add sufficient salt and pepper to the cleaned eggplant stems on both the sides and pat it dry.
2. Smear some oil on the surface. Let the water drain on paper or towel. Place a pan on the stove and heat the oil.
3. Add butter, garlic, chopped onion and stir them until cooked for around 8 to 10 minutes in medium flame. Increase the flame and add chicken stock and pasta. After 5 minutes, add the can tomatoes and stir occasionally.
4. Add the basil leaves and cook it for 30 minutes and add salt and pepper to the sauce based on your taste. Our delicious tomato basil sauce is ready, and it will look tantalizing. The thickness of the sauce can be adjusted by adding more stock.
5. Add pepper and herbs based on your taste and stir it just before you use it. This sauce can be cooled and refrigerated for up to a week or two without being stale.
6. Take a plate and mix the breadcrumbs, cheese, lemon juice and herbs well. Keep the mixture aside.
7. Take another dish and add the flour. Take a separate dish to add the eggs and beat the eggs to get a thin coating over the sandwich.
8. Take the crushed chicken cutlets made from the chick breast and season it with salt. Add pepper to it according to your state and make a sandwich with the soft cheese slices, the seasoned eggplant prepared earlier.
9. Place the chicken cutlet also along. Roll the sandwich carefully on the plate with flour to form a thin coating then a layer of beaten egg and finally the breadcrumbs.
Now your sandwich is ready for frying.
10. Make such coated sandwiches with the remaining three pieces of chicken cutlet like we did before.
11. Place a Pan suitable for shallow fry. Pour oil and Shallow fry the sandwiches until it turns deep golden. It will take 5 minutes of you fry it in medium to high flame.
12. Turn the sandwiches until it is evenly cooked on all the sides. Shallow fry all the sandwiches accordingly.
13. Raise your oven temperature to 375F. Spread some sauce in serving a dish or an oven tray and place the sandwich in such a way that it is smeared with tomato basil sauce.
14. Add more sauce if required and dust it with the remaining cheese. Bake the tray until golden.
Your delicious stuffed Eggplant and Chicken Parmigiana with Tomato-Basil sauce is ready to be served. Serve it hot or warm according to your taste.
This can be served along with cooked spaghetti or bread toast. As said above, for vegetarians, the chicken can be replaced with mushrooms, boiled vegetables or any of your favorite veggie.
The same steps can be followed. Instead of frying the sandwiches we can even bake them until it’s properly cooked.
I recommend using the fresh vegetables you’ve grown yourself for safer and more flavorful dishes. If you’ve never tried it before, don’t hesitate and start your own organic garden now.