These heavenly Eggplant Parmesan Sandwiches have crispy fried eggplant layered on a ciabatta roll with parmesan and mozzarella cheeses, marinara sauce, and fresh basil. Great for a hot lunch or dinner!
For the Eggplant Parmesan:
2medium eggplants(about 2.5 lbs)
3cupspanko bread crumbs
olive oilfor frying
For Sandwich Assembly:
1cupgrated parmigiano reggiano cheese
1cupmarinara sauce(I love Rao's)
1lbball of fresh mozzarellasliced thinly
olive oilfor drizzling
fresh basil leaves
Slice the eggplants into ½” thick disks. If you have the time, season the slices with salt and set aside on rack to “drain” for 30 minutes. Wipe the salt and excess moisture off with paper towel. If you don’t have the time, you can get away with not doing this step, but you’ll need to season the eggplant more aggressively in later steps.
Preheat the oven to 250 degrees F.
Place the flour in a dredging bowl. Place the panko, oregano, and garlic powder in another dredging bowl, and stir to combine. In a third bowl, whisk together the eggs with a pinch of salt, pepper, and a tablespoon of water.
Dredge the eggplant slices in the flour, shake off the excess, then in the egg, shake off the excess, then into the panko bread crumbs. Set aside.
Heat up a skillet over medium heat, and fill with enough olive oil to coat the bottom of the pan about ¼” up. Place a single layer of eggplant slices into the skillet and fry for about 5 minutes on each side, until golden brown. Make sure to watch that the eggplant slices aren’t burning, and adjust the heat up or down as needed.
Place the fried eggplant slices on a tray, season with salt and pepper, then keep in the warm oven while you finish frying all batches of eggplant. Add more olive oil to the skillet as needed.
When you’re done frying all the eggplant, remove the eggplant from the oven and increase the temperature to 350 degrees F.
To assemble each sandwich, slice a ciabatta roll in half, then put on a single layer of eggplant slices. Season with a pinch of salt and pepper, then add a couple spoonfuls of grated parmesan, then a couple spoonfuls of marinara sauce, then a single layer of sliced mozzarella. Drizzle with olive oil, then put the top of the sandwich on and bake for 10 minutes until the cheese is melty. Tuck a few basil leaves into each sandwich, then enjoy!