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5 inspired vegetarian sandwiches

By: Enrique Gili on Oct. 15, 2012, 6:03 p.m.
Eggplant Parmesan Hero

Photo: Enrique Gili

6 of 7

Eggplant Parmesan Hero

Bite down into layers of gooey goodness wedged between toasted bread to cure what ails ya.

Prep time: 45 minutes

Total time: 2 hours

Yield: Serves 4

Eggplant Parmesan Hero


  • 1 pound eggplant, rinsed and sliced
  • 2 tablespoons sea salt
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 4 ounces milk
  • 2 cups bread crumbs
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon garlic salt
  • 2 ounces olive oil plus extra
  • 2 cups ready-made marinara sauce
  • 1 loaf Italian bread
  • 6 ounces mozzarella cheese, sliced
  • 12 leaves fresh basil
  • 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
Cooking directions
  1. Cut eggplant in half lengthwise, then cuts slices into 1/2-inch sections. Rinse and liberally salt. Place eggplant between two paper towels and weight with cooking pans to remove excess moisture, about 30 minutes. Rinse again and pat dry.
  2. Combine eggs and milk in mixing bowl. Beat lightly. In second bowl combine bread crumbs, Italian seasoning and garlic salt. Stir until blended.
  3. Place eggplant in batter then dredge in bread crumbs, coating each side.
  4. Heat olive oil in large heavy-bottomed skillet until oil begins to hiss, about 2 minutes. Cook eggplant about 3 minutes on each side or until golden brown. Cook in batches add more oil if needed. Set aside.
  5. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Wipe out skillet with paper towel to remove excess oil. Add marinara sauce and bring to low boil. Add eggplant to marinara and simmer over low heat about 5 minutes.
  6. Slice Italian loaf lengthwise. Layer ingredients: mozzarella cheese, eggplant, basil, Parmesan cheese, pepper flakes. Press firmly. Place on baking sheet and heat on center rack of oven about 5 minutes. Remove and cool slightly before serving.