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Something special happens to the taste of eggplant when it’s coated in bread crumbs, pan-fried until crisp and topped with tomato sauce and melted provolone cheese.

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Ingredients


  • 12 slices Villaggio® Artesano Bread, toasted and divided
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 eggplant (about 1 1/4 lb/300 g), trimmed and cut crosswise into 16 rounds
  • 1/4 cup (60 mL) vegetable oil
  • 2 cups (500 mL) prepared marinara sauce
  • 8 slices provolone cheese
  • 2 tbsp (30 mL) chopped fresh basil
  • 1/2 tsp (2 mL) flaked sea salt (optional)


Directions


In food processor, pulse 4 slices toasted bread to make fine crumbs; place in shallow bowl. In separate bowl, beat eggs lightly. Dip eggplant slices into egg and dredge in bread crumbs until evenly coated.

Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C). Heat oil in large skillet set over medium-high heat; fry eggplant, in batches, turning once, for about 3 minutes or until golden brown. Transfer to paper towels to drain.

Arrange remaining 8 slices of toasted bread on baking sheet. Spread 1 tbsp (15 mL) marinara sauce over each slice; arrange eggplant slices over top, overlapping slightly. Divide remaining marinara sauce among sandwiches and top with slice of provolone cheese. Bake for about 10 minutes or until cheese is melted and sauce is heated through. Sprinkle with basil, and sea salt (if using).

Tip: You can substitute mozzarella or Asiago for the provolone cheese.