A simple cheese topping makes this eggplant and tomato casserole flavorful and appealing.
I like to use organic canned tomatoes in this dish, but feel free to use 2 cups of peeled and seeded fresh tomatoes in place of the canned tomatoes.
- 1 medium eggplant (sliced in 1/4-inch thick rounds)
- Extra virgin olive oil
- 1 can (14.5 ounces) diced tomatoes, with juice
- 1/2 medium sweet onion, cut in thin slices
- 1 medium clove garlic, minced
- 1/8 teaspoon dried leaf basil
- Dash salt (or to taste)
- Dash freshly ground black pepper (or to taste)
- Layer eggplant slices in a colander, salting each layer generously. Let stand for 30 minutes. Rinse well and pat dry.
- Heat a thin layer of olive oil in a large skillet or sauté pan over medium heat; add eggplant to the hot oil and cook, turning once, for about 5 minutes, or until lightly browned. Repeat until all eggplant slices are cooked, using as little oil as needed to fry the slices. Transfer to a plate and set aside.
- Add more oil to the skillet if needed; add onions and garlic. Cook until tender.
- Add the tomatoes to onion mixture along with the basil, and salt and pepper, to taste.
- Layer eggplant slices with the onion and tomato mixture in a shallow, lightly greased casserole.
- Bake the eggplant for 20 minutes at 350° F (180° C/Gas 4). Top with sliced or shredded Mozzarella cheese and bake for 8 minutes longer, or until cheese is melted.
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