Here is my Eggplant Vegan Parmigiana from Episode 1 of The Chefs' Line. As judge Dan Hong said, 'It was a really great take on this classic dish. A delicious vegan Eggplant Parmigiana.' You're going to love it too!
EGGPLANT VEGAN PARMIGIANA
700ml tomato passata
2 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed with a knife
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
few torn basil leaves
salt to taste
2 medium to large eggplants
1 ½ cups plain flour
¼ cup nutritional yeast flakes
2 tablespoons dried oregano, plus extra to serve
1 ½ cups soy milk
1 tsp salt
rice bran oil, for shallow frying
½ cup raw cashews
¼ cup nutritional yeast flakes ½ teaspoon onion powder ½ teaspoon salt
Melted Cheese Sauce
1 ½ cups regular soy milk
½ cup nutritional yeast flakes
2 tablespoons cornflour
1-2 teaspoons ‘chicken’ style flavoured stock powder
First make the pomodoro sauce. Heat the oil over a low-medium heat and add the garlic.
Allow to infuse for 1-2 minutes, ensuring the garlic doesn’t brown.
Stir through the passata, salt and basil leaves. Simmer over a low heat for 15-20 minutes while you prepare the eggplant and cheese sauce, stirring sauce occasionally.
Preheat the oven to 180C.
Thinly slice the eggplant into even long strips, using a mandolin or knife.
Into one medium bowl pour in the soy milk and in another bowl, combine the flour, nutritional yeast flakes, oregano and salt.
Dip each eggplant slice in the soy milk and then coat in the flour mixture.
Heat the oil and then fry the eggplant slices in batches until golden brown. Drain on absorbent paper and set aside.
Place all ingredients into a nut or spice grinder and grind to a fine or chunky meal, to your preference. Set aside.
In a medium saucepan, heat soy milk and add the cornflour which has been first dissolved in a little of the milk.
Add the nutritional yeast flakes and stock powder.
Whisk until the sauce thickens. Check seasonings, adding extra salt if necessary. This is your melted cheese sauce.
In a baking dish (sizes can vary, I used a 26cm x 16cm baking dish) spread a ladle of the pomodoro sugo over the base. Then place a layer of the fried eggplant slices.
Next, generously drizzle the melted cheese sauce and then sprinkle with the cashew parmesan.
Repeat the layering until the eggplant is all used, then finish with a final layer of the pomodoro sugo, cheese sauce and cashew parmesan. Drizzle over some extra olive oil and sprinkling of oregano.
Bake uncovered in the preheated oven for approximately 20 minutes or until the sauce is bubbling happily away.
Allow to rest for at least 10 minutes before slicing and serving.
Enjoy with crusty bread and salad.