Recipe: Percitelli with Eggplant Parmesan

|February 24, 2011|read comments (0)
Author: Mama's Kitchen

Veteran's Day this year I made another family favorite – Percitelli with Eggplant Parmesan in Meat Sauce. 

This year has been a rough one with so many funerals and wakes in the past month or so.  It got to the point that I was either at a wake or a funeral at least 5 days out of the week for several weeks.


I lost a few very close friends.  One quite suddenly and unexpected.  And it has not left me much time for anything at all.

With it being Veteran’s Day, of course I visited my dad’s grave, and my uncles and great uncles that all served our country. My paternal grandmother was a Gold Star mom. Three boys in the service, 2 in the Army and my dad in the Navy. Things were different in those days – there was no communication, computers, cell phones – just Gold Stars placed in the windows of the homes of those that were “missing”.


Yes, they did all come home – but there were many that didn’t.  And I just can't imagine a mother having to hang that Gold Star in her window and not know if her son would ever be found.


After I got home I started today’s dinner –

Eggplant Parm with Percitelli in Meat Sauce





And since my head is still up my azzzz with all this going on – I of course forgot to take my ground chuck out of the freezer – so it ended up in the pan frozen.  But it thawed as it cooked and didn't take all that much longer to cook. Heat large skillet, add some olive oil and heat the oil. Add 2+ pounds ground chuck and fry, breaking up, until it is all thawed and you can then season.


Meat seasonings:
Kosher salt
Fresh ground black pepper
Garlic
Parsley
Ground fennel


While that was cooking, I started my eggplant.


Peeled and sliced thick; dip in beaten egg, then coat well with seasoned bread crumbs –


Plain dry bread crumbs
Kosher salt
Fresh ground black pepper
Basil
Parsley
Garlic
Onion powder
Paprika

Skillet fried in olive oil.

Now – as you can notice – I did not salt the eggplant slices, etc. to remove any water.  There is no need to do this.  My eggplant wasn't bitter either.  Nor did it soak up a lot of oil.

By the time my eggplant was fried, my sauce ingredients were in the pan:

Tomato puree – and a half can of water
Tomato paste – and a can of water
Pinch sugar
Kosher salt
Fresh ground black pepper
Parsley
Onion powder
Basil
Fresh grated Pecorino Romano cheese


Bring to simmer; allow to simmer while my pot of water came to a rolling boil for my percitelli. Add my generous helping of salt, wait for the water to return to a rolling boil, add my percitelli and cook al dente.


While the macaroni is cooking, I cut my provolone cheese into rounds to fit on the eggplant slices.  It's hard these days to find a decent mozzarella cheese, and provolone is a great substitute.

Place the eggplant slices in a baking dish with a spoon of the sauce on top; top with a sliced of cheese. Placed in a preheated 350* F. oven just long enough to melt the cheese just a bit. We like our cheese ON our parm dishes, not melting off into the pan. Spoon a bit of sauce over for serving.


I sliced crusty Italian rolls to toast in the oven and added a piece of garlic/herb focaccia that I had made – just to heat through.
 



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