I don't meant to toot my own horn, but this easily falls into one of my top, "OMG-I'm-in-heaven" recipe tasting moments. I mean, really... why go out for this when you can make your own for a fraction of the cost and the fat?
1 medium eggplant, sliced into 1/2-inch rounds
1 medium tomato
1/4 cup shredded parmesan cheese (or mozzarella)
3/4 cup whole grain bread crumbs
1 tsp dried oregano
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
1/4 cup part-skim ricotta
salt + pepper
1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
2. Wash the eggplant, then slice it into 1/2-inch rounds. Lay the eggplant on a cutting board and sprinkle with salt. Let the eggplant sit 5 minutes: the salt will draw bitter liquid out of the eggplant. Pat dry with a paper towel. Flip and repeat.
3. Beat the egg in a shallow dish or bowl and set aside. In a separate shallow dish or bowl, whisk together the bread crumbs, oregano, red pepper flakes, 1/2 tsp salt and freshly ground black pepper. Set aside.
4. Heat 2 tbsp olive oil in a large pan over medium-high heat. While the pan comes up to temperature, pat the eggplant dry with a paper. Pass each slice through the egg, then through the bread crumbs. Place the eggplant in the pan and cook for 5 minutes. Drizzle with extra olive oil before flipping them over. Cook the second side another 5 minutes.
5. While the eggplant cooks, stir a little salt and pepper into the ricotta. Set aside. Wash the tomato, then cut it into 1/4-inch slices. (You can remove the seeds if you want to.)
6. Transfer the eggplant to a baking sheet that has been lined with parchment paper or foil for easy clean-up. Top half of the eggplant slices with 1 tbsp of ricotta, then top with another slice of eggplant. Place a slice of tomato over the eggplant, and sprinkle with 1/2 tbsp parmesan or mozzarella cheese. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the cheese is golden. Garnish with fresh basil and serve.