2 (1 ? pound) eggplants, preferable Sicilian
1 cup all-purpose flour, or more if necessary
Peanut oil for, frying the eggplant
1 ? cups freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
2 cups tomato sauce (see link)
Kosher or sea salt to taste


1. Wash the eggplant and pat dry. Cut into ?-inch disks, with the skin on, and sprinkle with salt. Transfer to a colander, set in the sink, and let drain for at least 45 minutes and up to hours.
2. When the eggplant has drained, pat each piece dry. Heat the vegetable oil in a heavy-duty skillet. Dip each eggplant disk into the flour and fry in batches until golden brown and crispy, about 8 minutes per batch. Drain the cooked eggplant on paper towels.
3. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Spoon a small amount of the tomato sauce across the bottom of a 9x9x2-inch baking dish, or any ovenproof dish that is similar in size. Arrange a layer of the cooked eggplant over the sauce. Spoon over a little tomato sauce and sprinkle with the grated cheese. Arrange another layer of the eggplant and continue with the sauce, cheese and eggplant until you add all of the eggplant. Top with more of the sauce and the cheese.
4. Bake until the casserole is hot and top is crispy, about 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and let rest 5 minutes before serving.
Chef Joe Simone learned how to make this dish from a restaurateur in Florence, Italy. Unlike other Eggplant Parmesan recipes, this one calls for dredging eggplant slices in flour, not breadcrumbs. The secret to keeping the dish light is to drain the eggplant slices very well before dredging. You can layer the ingredients and refrigerate the dish overnight before baking, or you can prepare the dish ahead and serve it at room temperature.
Joe Simone's Eggplant Par
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