This is one of the most famous Italian dishes in the U.S. There are many variations to the recipe. Some people dub the eggplants with flour before frying them. I prefer not to, because they will be soaked in sauce while baking and all the breading will come off. The original recipe calls for caciocavallo cheese, but it is hard to find in the US. Therefore, I opted for a mix of provolone (similar in taste) and mozzarella instead.
Basil: a few leaves
Parmigiano Reggiano: 5 oz
Olive oil: 6 tablespoons
Kosher salt: 4 oz
Regular salt: as much as needed
Provolone cheese: 8 oz
Mozzarella: 8 oz
Garlic: 1 clove
Tomato sauce: 32 oz
Vegetable oil: as much as needed
1) In a pan, pour a little oil, garlic and chopped onion. Sauté for a few minutes, then add the tomato sauce, salt and pepper to taste, and simmer until the sauce starts thickening.
2) When the sauce will have thickened, add the basil leaves and turn off the heat. Cut the cheese into thin slices.
3) Peel,wash and dry eggplants, remove the stems, and cut eggplants into slices of about 1 centimeter of thickness .
4) In a large skillet, pour abundant frying oil, then fry the slices, a few at a time; flip them on both sides then drain them on a paper towel. Grease a baking dish with oil and sprinkle the bottom of it with a little sauce.
5) Lay as many slices as they fit in the baking dish, top them with a bit of the sauce, then grated Parmesan cheese and lastly, a layer of mozzarella and provolone slices.
6) Continue, following this order, until all ingredients are used, ending with the fried eggplant slices.
Top them with the remaining sauce and grated Parmesan. Bake at 400 °F for 35-40 minutes.
Let it sit for about 10 minutes before serving.