For Foolproof Crispy Eggplant Parm, Think Small

Eggplant parmesan is one of those dishes that feels intimidating, but if you can nail it, it's absolutely delicious. If you're a vegetarian or vegan it's an incredible meat substitute, but it's also just a delicious vegetable, with an incredibly hearty texture, to add into your cooking rotation

When it comes to making eggplant parm, you might be turned off by the multitude of steps required to make the dish or the time that it takes. After all, when you make lasagna, all you have to do is stack no-boil lasagna noodles with your sauce and cheese and your dish is ready to hit the oven. 

Eggplant parm does require you to fry the eggplant before you can assemble it. And if you go the traditional route, you'll likely bread the eggplant before you fry it. Still, you can go through all the steps, assemble and bake your dish only to get an overly soft portion once it's sliced and served. So, what's to be done if you want more of a crispy texture in your serving? 

Stacks on stacks

To ensure that you don't get a soft or mushy serving of eggplant parm, the key is to downsize. By making eggplant parm stacks, you can be sure that your portion will have a crispier texture and you can prevent food waste by portioning them out in advance. 

To make eggplant parmesan stacks, you first need to make your favorite marinara-style tomato sauce. Then, you need to secure the mozzarella and parmigiano-reggiano cheeses of your choice. You can fry your eggplant slices either breaded or un-breaded, or you can save time by brushing them with oil and roasting them in a 400-degree Fahrenheit oven for 20 to 30 minutes, or until they are slightly golden brown. Next, you'll assemble your stacks by spooning some sauce on top of the cooked eggplant slices and adding the cheese. Press the cheese down lightly so it sticks to the sauce a bit. This will help when you transfer them to your sheet pan. Add your stacks onto the sheet pan and then pop them under the broiler for one to two minutes until the cheese is melted and bubbling. 

This hack means everyone gets the perfectly textured serving, and it looks really elegant when plated.