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Italian Breaded Eggplant

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– raw, vegan, gluten-free, nut-free –

Today I am going to cover a technique that just might help you fall in love with eggplant. For some of you, there won’t be any arm-twisting, but for others… well, I know that I have my work cut out for me. I used to be one that didn’t care for this unique fruit, as I always found it rubbery and bitter.

If you have been turned off for these same reasons, I ask that you give this recipe/technique a try… giving the poor eggplants of the world one more chance.

But before we can dive into a technique that will make this fruit more enjoyable, we need to back up a bit. We have to start off on the “right eggplant,” to do that, it’s essential to start by selecting a smaller one. I know you will be tempted to grab the Grand Poobah of all eggplants, but you must resist. The older and bigger, the more likely it is to taste bitter.

To peel or not to peel

It all boils down to your preference, the skin is entirely edible, nutritious, and can be left on. But there are a few things to keep in mind.

Larger eggplants can be tough-skinned, and if you’re holding one of these in your hands, peel that baby. If it is young and on the small side, go ahead and leave on the skin. Over the years, I have made raw eggplant both with and without… being equally happy with the outcome.

I never really knew that there were so many varieties of eggplants. They come in many shapes, sizes, and colors…they vary from white to green, to a deep blackish purple.

Given many names, based on variety, they are referred to as;  Black Magic, Black Beauty, Black Bell eggplant, “Zebra” or “Graffiti” eggplant,  Albino and White Beauty, Green Calyx, and Purple Calyx. I have made this recipe many times, usually with purple and white eggplants.

Eggplants don’t just look pretty; they also possess many nutritional benefits.  They are naturally low in calories, are fat-free, and are an excellent source of dietary fiber.  They are also high in potassium and contain iron and protein.  So when asked, “Where do you get your protein?” You can say, “Eggplants, of course!”  They are also over ninety percent of water! Get your hydration on!

There is one downside to eggplants, and that is if you are avoiding nightshades… that being the case, this recipe probably isn’t for you.

If you purchase some eggplants but can’t get to them right away…wash, dry, and store them at room temperature, making sure to use them within one or two days. You can also wrap it in a dry paper towel and place it in a perforated or loosely closed plastic bag in the refrigerator. Use within five to seven days.

You can make these Italian Breaded Eggplant slices and enjoy them as a snack, as hors-d’oeuvres, or make a meal out of them. I love them served over a bed of zucchini noodles that has been drenched in marinara sauce. But that’s me. Are you ready to love your eggplant today? If so, give this recipe a try and give a shout out on how it turns out. Blessings, amie sue


Italian Breaded Eggplant:

Cherry Tomato Marinara Sauce:


Italian Breaded Eggplant:

Eggplant prep:

  1. Salt each slice generously and lay them flat over a few layers of paper towels.
  2. Let the salted eggplant sit for 1/2 hour to 1 1/2 hours.
  3. You’ll see beads of moisture start to form on the surface of the eggplant as it sits.
  4. When you’re ready to proceed with the recipe, rinse the eggplant under cold water to remove the excess salt and pat dry.

Dredging Station #1:

  1. 1/4 cup of non-dairy milk.
    • I prefer to either use thick coconut milk or thick almond milk (use less water when making regular almond milk).
  2. Dip each slice, one by one, into the milk, quickly moving to dredge station #2.

Dredging Station #2:

  1. In a bowl, combine the ground flax, chili powder, Italian seasoning, cumin, and salt.
    • Using your magic bullet or coffee grinder, grind your flax seeds to a powder — place in a bowl.  Now mix in the remaining ingredients, making sure that the spices get mixed in thoroughly.
  2. After dipping the eggplant into the milk, place it into the flax mixture and coat it thoroughly.
  3. Place the coated eggplant slice on the teflex sheet that is lining your dehydrator tray.
    • If you don’t own the non-stick sheets, you can use parchment paper.
  4. Dehydrate at 145 degrees (F) for 1 hour, then reduce to 115 degrees (F) for about 1 more hour.  We want these to be tender when you bite down on them.
  5. Storage: Place the eggplant slices, gently, in a container that will seal well.  To be honest, I am not sure how long they will last…they seem to disappear quite quickly around here.  If you do decide to store them, I would give them 2-3 days.

Cherry Tomato Marinara Sauce:

  1. In the food processor, combine the cherry tomatoes, sun-dried tomatoes, olive oil, garlic clove, oregano, basil, cilantro, and salt. Process until either chunky or smooth—however, you prefer.
    • If the sun-dried tomatoes are tough and dry, soak them in some warm water to plump them back up. Be sure to drain and hand-squeeze the excess water from them before adding it to the food processor.
    • You can use avocado oil in place of olive oil.
  2. Spiralize the zucchini to create pasta noodles. Toss with marina sauce, place some breaded eggplant slices on top and enjoy!
    • If you have the time, heavily salt the zucchini noodles and let them sit for 30-60 minutes, this will pull the water out of them, leaving you with a softer noodle. Be sure to rinse the salt off and blot dry before adding the sauce.
  3. Store leftover sauce in the fridge for 3-4 days.

Culinary Explanations:

25 thoughts on “Italian Breaded Eggplant

  1. Tracy says:

    I’ll be right over!!!

  2. Hey, Amie-Sue!
    Oh wow, das kann ich mir so gut vorstellen, darf ich auch zu ihnen essen kommen, wenn sie die Auberginen wieder zubereiten!?
    Sie müssen mir nur früh genug Bescheid geben, da mein Weg aus Berlin ja doch etwas länger ist. Lach
    Was ich mir super vorstellen könnte wenn man noch etwas sehr guten alten Aceto Balsamico über Sauce und Aubergine träufelt. Ich liebe ihn einfach so.
    Viele Liebe Grüße aus Berlin,
    Jesse Gabriel

    • amie-sue says:

      Good day Jesse….

      Your message translates to… “Hey, Amie Sue!
      Oh wow, I can imagine that good, I may even get to eat them when they prepare the eggplant again?
      You have to give me plenty of notice only because my way from Berlin is a little longer but yes. laughing
      What I could imagine great if you drips something very good old balsamic vinegar over sauce and eggplant. I love him just like that.
      Many Greetings from Berlin,
      Jesse Gabriel”

      So, I think Google Translate, mixes things up a bit but I get the point. lol

  3. Oh mein Gott, was hat Google den da gemacht?
    Ja Sie bekommen 100 Punkte!

    • amie-sue says:

      Google translates your last message as: “Oh my God, what Google has done?
      Laughing! Yes, you get 100 points! regards,Jesse”

      lol Jesse, I am doing my best to translate. Does make me snicker too!

  4. Iman says:

    Hey Amie-Sue!

    Let me start off by saying i love love love you. Thank you for creating such wonderful dishes and generously replying to inquisitive hearts. I have just transitioned to being a vegetarian (never ate that much meat anyway) and have a hydrator that is broken. Working on fixing it. I go to your site at least 5X a week since i’ve discovered it about 2mths ago. Thanks you so much. I will be trying this sometime this week since i recently bought and eggplant…tis the season for them. Thanks again.

    • amie-sue says:

      Why thank you Iman :) I am glad that you find my site inspirational and helpful. I am here if you have any questions or more of these wonderful comments. hehe I love it all. Get that dehydrator fixed so you can play! :) Have a wonderful day, amie sue

  5. Sam says:

    Dear Amie-Sue,
    Thank you so much for your awesome raw recipe website. How very kind, generous, thoughtful, compassionate, etc. of you to have all these free raw recipes that look so delicious. I cannot wait to start making some of them. I just discovered your website about a couple of weeks ago or one week ago. Cannot recall exactly when. I could not believe that you were sharing all your recipes for free when you could easily be selling them in the format of e-books, Kindle books, regular hard cover books, etc. Thanks so much.

    • amie-sue says:

      Thank you Sam :) My heart and passion is to share. I will admit, I would love to do a cookbook and to hold my love for healthy eating in a 3 dimensional object…. and should that day happen, wonderful, but until then… I just want to share and to help others. I will forever be a student in my kitchen and face many trials and errors, I hope to save others from them. hehe

  6. Mary says:

    I would love to try this recipe and maybe give it an Italian twist. My concern is I’ve read elsewhere eggplant is not very good as a raw dish. Does the long dehydrating time make it less rubbery? I noticed you don’t salt and sweat the eggplant either. Do you feel it’s not a needed step?

    • amie-sue says:

      Hi Mary, I don’t eat much eggplant but I can say that when I made this dish I didn’t find it rubbery. As far as salting it and sweating it like I do zucchini noodles… I guess I didn’t see the need for this recipe. But again, I don’t use it much so it might be beneficial. Do you eat much eggplant? Have a wonderful evening, amie sue

  7. Serena says:

    I love eggplant!andi’m italian..sooooo…i wanna share with you something.
    We never peel eggplant, we like the entire taste of it, we makemedium slices, half cm don’t know in inches…and we put over some salt, than cover witha towel and some our later the sliced eggpant willhave push out all the bitter taste.
    I suggest to try it, cause they came out soft like after cooked. perfect for every recipe, either this oneif you dry them.
    Out i gave u something usefull.
    And i tried a raw parmigiana in this way and it was delicious!!!!
    Many blessing


    • amie-sue says:

      Thank you Serena for sharing that. I must admit that I haven’t dabbled much with eggplants, but you have sparked my interest in trying it again! Have a blessed evening, amie sue

  8. brigittegoble says:

    I would love to see your eggplant bacon recipe! Will be trying this too. I haven’t had much success with raw eggplant in the past and I always find myself wasting it. I hope this turns out good and I’ll definitely be including the salt sweating method. Have you tried making any other eggplant recipes with salting first since sharing this one?

    • amie-sue says:

      Good evening Brigittegoble,

      To be honest I haven’t tinkered all that much with eggplant. Hasn’t been a favorite veggie of mine but would be open to trying it again. :) If you have a particular recipe request, please hop on over to the forum and post it under the thread for converting cooked recipes to raw. Be sure to read the criteria first. :) Let me know what you think of this recipe. Blessings, amie sue :)

  9. cjan7 says:

    You have out done it again!! Looks so good. So anxious to try it tomorrow… I’ll let you know how it turns out… thank you so much for this recipe…I can taste it already!! hugs always, jan

    • amie-sue says:

      You bet Jan. Talk about perfect timing. :) I can’t wait to get your feedback. Enjoy my friend. hugs, amie sue

      • cjan7 says:

        Just pulled them out of the dehydrator a couple of hours ago…They turned out great!! I did tweak the recipe a little bit for the breading…. put a handful of almonds and some Nutrutional yeast in the blender with the flax seeds and herbs…Tasted a lil cheesy…LOL Wow, it was great!! Thank you so much for your expertise and the love that goes along with it.. You’re the bestest!! hugs, jan

        • amie-sue says:

          You work quick my friend! lol I love it. So happy that you enjoyed them. You can use a large array of spices and flavors. What’s tomorrows version? I know you already thinking of one! haha love and hugs, amie sue

          • cjan7 says:

            Oh, and I forgot to mention that I broke up some of the Bacon Style eggplant that I had made the day before and put it into the breading too… So yes, I guess that’s the new version too. LOL That’s what is so great about the RAW FOOD diet… The sky is the limit…But there are basics that you must follow and that’s where you have taught me….Nothing like a runny ice cream cake or cheesecake. (not having the lescithin}.. LOL

  10. laurelflynn says:

    Hi sweet Amie-sue! This is Laurel from the valley (Geneva Woods days!) I still treasure my scrapbook. Any advise about salt replacements. I’d love to use this but we are supposed to be salt free! Thanks, love & blessings

    • amie-sue says:

      Laurel!! What a wonderful surprise to hear from you. It just tickled me to hear that you still enjoy your scrapbook. It’s amazing how the years have flown by! I hope you two are happy and healthy.

      Regarding the salt. To reduce salt, which I am sure you are well aware of is to reduce all pre-packaged and convenience foods, they are loaded with salt. Even sweet foods! When giving up salt, it’s a fine time to reframe your thinking. Instead of viewing it as taking salt away, think of it instead as a way of “enhancing” your food. Typically salt is added to brighten and balance out other flavors in a dish. I might have a few tricks up my sleeve, I hope they inspire you to give them a try.

      Vinegar and Lemon (acids)

      Using vinegar or lemon will tone down any bitterness in a dish that would normally be canceled out with salt. It will also add a subtle but bright complexity to the rest of the flavors in your dish. Even zesting the peel of citrus in or onto a dish can help.

      Celery Powder

      Not celery salt. Celery is naturally salty and brings out the flavor of pretty much everything you sprinkle it on.
      You can make this yourself by slicing up celery into thin pieces, dehydrating it, and then grinding to a powder. Great for savory dishes. I did this for a friend of ours. She would add it directly to a recipe as well as shaking it onto the food in a salt shaker. Don’t use in sweet dishes.

      Kelp Powder

      Kelp delivers iodine similar to iodized salt, but without as much sodium. It has a natal sea salt taste to it, adds a nice flavor to dishes, and it doesn’t taste fishy.

      Maine Coast Sea Vegetables Organic Kelp Granules Salt Alternative – https://nouveauraw.com/recommended-ingredients/spices-seasonings/maine-coast-sea-vegetables-organic-kelp-granules-salt-alternative-1-5-ounce/

      Spices & Herbs:

      Load up on spices and herbs. Fresh herbs such as rosemary, thyme, chives, and basil are wonderful for elevating a dish. Dried herbs and ground spices such as: Herbs de Provence cayenne, lemon pepper, no-salt chili seasoning, as well as a blend of cardamom, cumin, and coriander are known as a substitute for salt.

      This is a great one to use too: The Spice Hunter Salt-Free Chefs Shake Blend – https://nouveauraw.com/recommended-ingredients/spices-seasonings/the-spice-hunter-salt-free-chefs-shake-blend-2-ounce-jar/

      I miss your smile and hugs! amie sue

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