Lasagna is one of Tonia's favorite meals and this dish has the layers of lasagna but with no macaroni. Plus you get the deliciousness of eggplant parm with the addition of zucchini and spinach.
It's a fabulously delicious way to get your "veg" on!
- 2 ½ cups dry bread crumbs (I use Italian )
- 2 large eggs
- 1 cup all-purpose flour, for dredging
- ½ cup olive oil
- 2 medium size eggplant, sliced lengthwise 1/2 inch thick
- 2 medium size zucchini, sliced 1/4 inch thick
- Salt and pepper
- 2 garlic cloves smash, peal then chop
- 1 bag fresh spinach
- 1 quart homemade tomato sauce or jar of marinara
- 1 pound fresh mozzarella shredded (leave some slices for the top)
- ¾ cup grated Grana Padano or Parmigiano-Reggiano
- 1 ¼ cup Parmesan
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Set up your assembly line by placing the flour into a shallow dish, beating your eggs in another separate bowl and pouring your bread crumbs into a 3rd dish. Dredge all of the eggplant slices in flour then the egg wash then the breadcrumbs, pressing in the crumbs to make sure they adhere. Set aside. Then do the zucchini slices.
Fry or bake the eggplant and zucchini. I prefer to fry mine. I like the crispy coating that comes from the frying. Baking gives you more of a dry crispness.
Fry - Heat about ½ cup olive oil in large sauté pan. Fry the eggplant, then the zucchini in the oil, turning once, until browned. Drain on a paper towel. You may have to add a little more oil if the eggplant soaks it all up.
Bake - Bake eggplant and zucchini on sheet pans, until cooked through and crumbs are crisp and golden, about 25 minutes on 375°.
In a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium-high heat. Add garlic and sauté until just about golden, about 1 to 2 minutes. Be careful not to burn your garlic. Rinse the spinach so it has a little water clinging to the leaves. Add the spinach to the pan with the garlic, season with ½ teaspoon salt, cover and cook until wilted, about 3 to 4 minutes.
Spread some of the sauce on the bottom of a baking dish. Layer the baked/fried eggplant, in an even layer. Spread with enough sauce to cover with a thin layer. Sprinkle with parmesan and the shredded mozzarella.
Spread all of the spinach in one layer and then top with the zucchini. Spread with more marinara/tomato sauce to cover. Sprinkle with more mozzarella and parmesan. Top with an even layer of the remaining eggplant.
Spread remaining sauce on top and sprinkle with grated Grana Padano and the reserved slices of mozzarella.
Cover with foil so that it is not touching the cheese and bake until bubbly, about 30 minutes. Uncover and bake until cheese is browned and crusty and sauce is bubbling all over, another 15 minutes.
Let cool and set 5 to 10 minutes before cutting.
This meal is great with a salad and some garlic bread. Or if you are serving to a large quantity of people you can make macaroni on the side to serve with the dish.
Don't forget, the left overs make mangialicious sandwiches!