I brought this dish to a potluck dinner for my Italian Language Meet-up group back in August, and it was quite a hit! I usually make this dish every summer, but of course it was the first time I did using Marcella's recipe. (the main difference between my mom's recipe and Marcella's is we have always used a pork shoulder ragu, but then you know how I feel about tomatoes...). Marcella's recipe is a bit lighter, and absolutely delicious, tomatoes and all!
First you slice the eggplant and steep it in salt.
Then fry the eggplant, a few slices at a time after dredging them in flour.
You cook Italian plum tomatoes in olive oil with some salt and reduce them, slice the buffalo-milk mozzarella, and tear some basil leaves into pieces. The oven is hot, and it is time to start layering the ingredients in a buttered baking dish: eggplant, tomato, mozzarella, parmesan and basil.
Repeat, ending with a layer of eggplant sprinkled with parmesan.
Bake and serve it to your lucky family or friends. Then sit back and wait for rave reviews!