Monday, September 27, 2010

paleo eggplant parmesan... hold the parmesan

eggplant parmesan has always been an odd dish to me, even from a young age. first off, i was never a huge fan of eggplant, and secondly what good is a recipe without any meat??

i had this TJ's brand in the cupboard

1 large eggplant
1 18 oz. jar marinara sauce-- i was pressed for time, but i normally would make my own sauce. be sure to look at the ingredient list for no added sugar.

almond flour for dredging
1 package of all natural sausage--i used sweet italian
1 large yellow onion, sliced
a couple cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
1 pint of grape tomatoes
good olive oil
red pepper flake
sea salt & pepper

i had to first solve the NO MEAT issue in traditional eggplant parmesan. i preheated the oven to 350 degrees. then, on a covered sheet pan i put the sausages, sliced onion, garlic and grape tomatoes. i coated them generously with olive oil and then seasoned them with salt, pepper, and red pepper flake and put them in the oven. i baked them for about 20 minutes, turning the sausages halfway through.

slice the eggplant in 1/4" slices. place into a bowl and drizzle with olive olive. dredge the eggplant in the almond flour and saute in batches over medium-high heat until golden on each side. *as you can see, the eggplant only holds a small amount of almond flour. don't worry, you're going to golden brown here, not a heavy breading. in a 9 x 13 glass pan, place the sauteed eggplant slices in one layer. top each eggplant slice with a couple tablespoons of marinara sauce and repeat the process until all the eggplant is used. you will not use all of the sauce here.

remove the sausage mixture from the oven. take the sausages off the pan and place on a cutting board to rest. return the onion/tomato mixture back to the oven. let the sausages rest for at least 5 minutes and then slice them on the diagonal. then place those sliced sausage pieces on top of the eggplant/sauce stacks. take the onions and tomatoes out of the oven and top the eggplant and sausage with the onions and tomatoes. pour the rest of the sauce over the entire thing.

finally, throw the entire glass pan into the oven for another 15 minutes. serve immediately!!

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