Pasta alla Norma

We’re going back to Sicily! Pasta alla Norma is a delicious Sicilian pasta dish with eggplant, marinara and basil. I’m excited to introduce you to this dish…

The post Pasta alla Norma appeared first on Cookie and Kate.

pasta alla norma recipe

We’re going back to Sicily! Pasta alla Norma is a delicious Sicilian pasta dish with eggplant, marinara and basil. I’m excited to introduce you to this dish because it is a completely satisfying vegetarian dinner. I’m craving a bowl as I type.

Most pasta alla Norma recipes are made with fried eggplant, but this recipe features roasted eggplant. Eggplant really absorbs oil like a sponge, so this lightens up the dish. Another plus? Roasting eggplant is easier and less messy.

I further lightened this classic recipe by using more eggplant and less pasta, so this dish won’t put you to sleep. It’s nice and saucy, just the way I like it.

pasta alla norma ingredients

I don’t speak Italian, so I first assumed that “norma” meant eggplant. Not the case! Norma is capitalized because she’s a lady. Or an opera, depending on how you look at it.

Here’s the backstory: Pasta alla Norma comes from Catania, a city on the eastern coast of Sicily. Catania is the hometown of Vincenzo Bellini, an Italian opera composer who lived in the early 1800s. One of Bellini’s most famous operas, Norma, is named after its lead character.

Folklore has it that playwright Nino Martoglio, after his first bite of this pasta dish, exclaimed, “Chista è ‘na vera Norma!” (“This is a true Norma!”) That’s quite a compliment.

Continue to the recipe...

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Caponata

Let’s make homemade caponata! This classic Sicilian appetizer or side dish is perfect for late summer meals. This recipe combines roasted (not fried) eggplant with sautéed bell…

The post Caponata appeared first on Cookie and Kate.

caponata with roasted eggplant

Let’s make homemade caponata! This classic Sicilian appetizer or side dish is perfect for late summer meals. This recipe combines roasted (not fried) eggplant with sautéed bell pepper, celery, tomatoes, olives and capers. Red wine vinegar and honey make it irresistibly tangy and sweet. If you generally enjoy these bold flavors, you’re going to love caponata.

Since international travel is largely off the table, I’ve been traveling vicariously through my food. This caponata is the perfect example. I’ve yet to make my way to Sicily to sample authentic caponata, but learning to make this dish has deepened my desire to explore the island. Mark my words, I’ll get there someday.

caponata ingredients

Caponata recipes vary from region to region and household to household. This recipe is where I landed. I took some cooking cues from my ratatouille recipe, which also features roasted eggplant stirred into a simmering tomato sauce. Caponata’s flavors are even deeper and more complex largely due to the intense agrodolce factor, or the interplay between sweet (honey and raisins) and sour (vinegar and capers).

I can’t claim this recipe is entirely authentic, but I hope it offers you a little taste of Sicily.

Continue to the recipe...

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5-Ingredient Eggplant Parm Skips the Fuss, Keeps the Cheese

A Big Little Recipe has the smallest-possible ingredient list and big everything else: flavor, ideas, wow factor. Psst: We don’t count salt, pepper, and certain fats (say, olive oil to dress greens or sauté onions), since we’re guessing you have those …

A Big Little Recipe has the smallest-possible ingredient list and big everything else: flavor, ideas, wow factor. Psst: We don't count salt, pepper, and certain fats (say, olive oil to dress greens or sauté onions), since we're guessing you have those covered. Today, we're making eggplant parm weeknight-friendly.


Usually, eggplant parm goes something like this:

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Baked Eggplant Parmesan

This baked Eggplant Parmesan is truly incredible: coated in a crispy crust that’s magically gluten free. You’ll never make it another way! Here’s one of the ultimate Italian comfort foods, done easier and healthier: eggplant Parmesan! Typically this baby is fried, but we have a secret for you. It’s even better baked, and this version is incredible. It’s from our friend Charlotte Smythe’s new cookbook One Pot Keto Cooking and you will be truly amazed by the flavor and texture. The eggplant is coated in an impossibly crispy coating that’s also magically gluten free and low carb. The secret? Almond flour. It’s a genius trick and you’ll never make this recipe another way. Here’s more about Charlotte’s baked eggplant Parmesan and the book! The secret to crispy baked eggplant Parmesan This baked eggplant Parmesan has the most crispy, flavorful coating and tender interior that every bite is a revelation. We made this recipe for my parents when they were in town visiting, and everyone kept exclaiming: wow! (True story.) The secret to the crispy exterior? Here’s what to know: Almond flour and Parmesan cheese make the perfect crispy coating. Almond flour has the perfect fluffy texture for breading, and it […]

A Couple Cooks – Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

This baked Eggplant Parmesan is truly incredible: coated in a crispy crust that’s magically gluten free. You’ll never make it another way!

Baked eggplant Parmesan

Here’s one of the ultimate Italian comfort foods, done easier and healthier: eggplant Parmesan! Typically this baby is fried, but we have a secret for you. It’s even better baked, and this version is incredible. It’s from our friend Charlotte Smythe’s new cookbook One Pot Keto Cooking and you will be truly amazed by the flavor and texture. The eggplant is coated in an impossibly crispy coating that’s also magically gluten free and low carb. The secret? Almond flour. It’s a genius trick and you’ll never make this recipe another way. Here’s more about Charlotte’s baked eggplant Parmesan and the book!

The secret to crispy baked eggplant Parmesan

This baked eggplant Parmesan has the most crispy, flavorful coating and tender interior that every bite is a revelation. We made this recipe for my parents when they were in town visiting, and everyone kept exclaiming: wow! (True story.) The secret to the crispy exterior? Here’s what to know:

  • Almond flour and Parmesan cheese make the perfect crispy coating. Almond flour has the perfect fluffy texture for breading, and it crisps up like a charm in the oven. Alex and I don’t eat gluten free, low carb or keto exclusively, but this method is our new favorite.
  • Make sure to buy grated Parmesan. That’s the cheese with the texture of snow: not the kind that looks like long sticks (that’s shredded). Grated has a similar texture to almond flour, and makes the perfect gluten free breading.
Baked eggplant Parmesan

Choosing eggplant: long and thin is preferred!

Another tip for making baked eggplant Parmesan: choose an eggplant that is on the long and thin side, if you can find it. Many large globe eggplants (the Italian variety) can have a rather fat bulb at the end. When you slice it to make an eggplant round, the rounds at the widest part of the eggplant can come out massive. We had this problem because we were working with a very large eggplant.

Try to find eggplants that are longer and thinner, to make for a more manageable size of rounds. It’s not a deal breaker: it just looks prettier. It tastes amazing no matter what the size of eggplant!

How to serve this baked eggplant Parmesan

This gluten free baked eggplant Parmesan is so tasty, you’ll want to eat the entire pan. (We almost did!) You can serve it either as a side dish or a main. If you’re serving it as a vegetarian dinner recipe, you’ll want to add some filling sides or try the casserole variation (see below). Here’s what we’d recommend:

  • Add pasta (gluten free or legume). Go Italian style and serve this eggplant Parmesan with pasta (long or short noodles). If you eat low carb or gluten free, you could try your favorite gluten free or legume pasta.
  • Add a big salad. Try it with a big salad, like Caesar Salad topped with chickpeas, or this Perfect Italian Salad.
  • Serve as a side with fish. Try it alongside lemon caper salmon, pan fried cod, or grilled tilapia.
Baked eggplant Parmesan

Try the casserole variation! (like a lasagna)

Want to turn this baked eggplant Parmesan into an even more filling vegetarian dinner recipe? Try it in the casserole style variation! This makes it into a lasagna-style baked main dish. Here are some notes about this variation:

  • Double the eggplant and breading. You’ll make the eggplant the same way, but double the quantities so you can stack it in a 9 x 13″ pan.
  • Layer the baked eggplant with marinara and mozzarella in 2 layers. You’ll need double the mozzarella cheese here. Place a layer of eggplant, then marinara and mozzarella, and do this twice.
  • Bake for 20 minutes until the cheese melts. Then top with fresh basil! More instructions are in the recipe below.

And that’s it! We know you’ll love Charlotte’s gluten free baked eggplant Parmesan as much as we did! Keep reading for more about her book.

One pot keto cooking

About the book: One Pot Keto Cooking

This baked eggplant Parmesan recipe is from the new book One Pot Keto Cooking by our pal Charlotte Smythe. Charlotte is an incredible recipe developer and photographer and the book is simply stunning. It’s full of delicious low-carb meals for the busy cook that are all cooked in one pot. It does include meat, but if you eat pescatarian like we do, there are plenty of vegetarian and seafood options. You’ll salivate over each one! Congratulations, Charlotte, on this masterpiece!

Grab a copy of the book: One Pot Keto Cooking by Charlotte Smythe

This baked eggplant Parmesan recipe is…

Vegetarian, gluten-free, keto, and low carb.

Print
Baked eggplant Parmesan

Baked Eggplant Parmesan


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (5 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 4
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Description

This baked Eggplant Parmesan is truly incredible: coated in a crispy crust that’s magically gluten free. You’ll never make it another way!


Ingredients

  • 1 medium large eggplant, about 1 pound (long and thin preferable) OR see casserole variation*
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup almond flour
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning (or 1 teaspoon each dried basil, oregano and thyme)
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 cups jarred marinara sauce
  • 1 cup grated mozzarella cheese (we used a combination of fresh mozzarella and shredded)
  • Fresh basil, to serve

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or spray with cooking spray. 
  2.  Cut off the ends of the eggplant and cut it into 3/8-inch slices. 
  3. Beat the eggs in a shallow bowl and set it aside.
  4. Combine the Parmesan cheese, almond flour, Italian seasoning, and kosher salt in another shallow bowl and set it aside. 
  5. Dip each eggplant slice into the egg and then the Parmesan cheese mixture. Transfer the coated eggplant slices to the prepared sheet pan in a single layer, about 1/2-inch apart. Use two sheet pans if you do not have one large enough to fit all the slices. 
  6. Bake the eggplant for about 20 minutes, flipping them halfway through, until tender and golden brown. 
  7. Remove the eggplant from the oven (go to Casserole Variation* if desired). Add 2 tablespoons of the marinara sauce on top of each eggplant slice and add an equal amount of mozzarella cheese on top of the sauce. 
  8. Return the pan to the oven and continue to bake for 5 to 7 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and the crust is golden brown. Top with torn basil. Serve with pasta (gluten free or legume pasta) or a few side dishes, or the casserole variation makes for a more filling main dish.

Notes

Reprinted with permission from One-Pot Keto Cooking by Charlotte Smythe

*Casserole variation: Double the recipe and use 2 pounds of eggplant and double the breading ingredients. After baking for 20 minutes until tender, spread 1/2 cup marinara sauce on the bottom of a 9 x 13″ pan. Place half the baked eggplant in a layer on the bottom, then top with 1 cup marinara and 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese. Add the second layer of eggplant with another 1 cup marinara and 1 cup shredded mozzarella. Bake 20 minutes until the cheese melts, then top with torn fresh basil leaves. 

  • Category: Main Dish
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: Italian inspired

Keywords: Baked eggplant parmesan, Eggplant parmesan

More eggplant recipes

We love eggplant around here! If you do too, here are some recipes you also might enjoy:

  • Perfect Roasted Eggplant Baking until it’s tender makes for unreal flavor. Serve it as a side dish, or toss with pasta!
  • Roasted Eggplant Pasta An impressive plant based dinner, it works for weeknights or parties.
  • Easy Eggplant Pizza Use eggplant for the crust to make eggplant pizza! These mini pizzas are tasty and easy to make, covered in garlicky sauce and gooey cheese.
  • Grilled Eggplant Here’s how to make perfectly grilled eggplant! These tricks make it come out tender every time.

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Eggplant Parmesan

Classic for a reason, Italian baked Eggplant Parmesan is comfort food at its best. Breaded eggplant slices are layered with mozzarella, Parmesan, basil, and tomato sauce, and baked until bubbly. Continue reading “Eggplant Parmesan” »

Classic for a reason, Italian baked Eggplant Parmesan is comfort food at its best. Breaded eggplant slices are layered with mozzarella, Parmesan, basil, and tomato sauce, and baked until bubbly.

Continue reading "Eggplant Parmesan" »

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The Very Best Thing to Do With Your Watermelon Rinds

Shortly after I turned 20, my family moved from central Illinois to Southern California, swapping snow boots for sandals; we also traded in two apple trees for a grove of lemons, avocados, pomegranates, figs, and jujubes. A few years ago, I started my …

Shortly after I turned 20, my family moved from central Illinois to Southern California, swapping snow boots for sandals; we also traded in two apple trees for a grove of lemons, avocados, pomegranates, figs, and jujubes. A few years ago, I started my quest to grow heirloom vegetables, which frustrated and rewarded me in seemingly equal quantities—only a few hinona kabu turnips came up the first year, but the dan hobak (known as kabocha to most folks) immediately blanketed the backyard, flowering with dozens of sweet squashes-to-be.

My mother, who grew up on a farm in South Korea, was overjoyed that she could be outside all year round —even after she fell from the top of her fig tree and broke her little toe. “Look at all these figs I picked!” she exclaimed, sitting on the ground with her toe swelling up. “Make sure you take all the figs inside and wash them right away, or their juice will attract bugs,” she instructed my father when he deposited her on her bed, shaking his head and going to call the doctor.

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Eggplant Parmesan is classic Italian comfort food, where roasted eggplant slices are baked in a rich Pomodoro aka tomato sauce topped with mozzarella and Parmesan cheese. So we took the authentic Italian recipe and turn it into an absolutely fanta…

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The post Rich Creamy Vegan Eggplant Parmesan appeared first on My Pure Plants.

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What do you need to make the BEST ever Vegan Moussaka? I would say layers of roasted eggplant slices, a hearty tomato-based mince ragú sauce, and a creamy white bechamel baked together. We made this recipe with THREE different ground bee…

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The post Vegan Moussaka with 3 Vegan Mince Alternatives appeared first on My Pure Plants.