Grilled Eggplant Parmesan
|1 large eggplant (1½ lbs), peeled and sliced 1/4-inch thick|
|Vera Jane's Extra-Virgin Olive Oil, for brushing|
|4 large plum tomatoes, sliced crosswise 1/4-inch thick|
|Sea salt and black pepper to taste|
|1/3 cup green olives, chopped|
|1 to 2 Tbsp hot pepper paste|
|1/4 cup finely shredded basil, plus whole leaves for garnish|
|4 oz Fontina cheese, thinly sliced|
|2 oz Parmigiano-Reggiano, shredded|
Preheat the oven to 450°F and heat a grill pan. Brush the eggplant and tomato slices with olive oil and season to taste with salt and pepper. Grill the eggplant in batches over moderately high heat, turning once, until softened and well marked, about 5 minutes. Grill the tomatoes, turning once, until lightly marked, about 3 minutes, being careful to keep them intact.
In a bowl, combine the chopped olives, hot pepper paste, and shredded basil. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. In the center, arrange half of the eggplant in a 9-inch square, overlapping the slices slightly. Top with half of the grilled tomatoes, olive mixture, and Fontina. Repeat with the remaining ingredients, ending with the cheese.
Bake in the center of the oven for about 15 minutes, until bubbling and golden. Let stand for 10 minutes. Garnish with basil leaves and serve.
Makes 4 servings