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Old 06-09-2015, 09:31 AM   #31
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Originally Posted by Zhizara View Post
Well, I cooked it, and the flavor is great.

However, apparently I used too much spaghetti sauce and it ended up soupy. Delicious, but soupy.

Another lesson learned. *sigh*
Remember, when you place the next layer on, it cause the sauce below it to spread out. So just a dollop here and a dollop there is plenty. And don't spread it out. Leave that job to the next layer. A lot of folks make the same mistake as you. They think the whole layer has to be covered in sauce before placing the next layer on. Then they pile the sauce on the top just to make sure it doesn't bake too dry. This is one dish where less is more.

When I am making a parm dish, I put three dollops down one side (left side) and two on the other side (right) of a layer. Then I reverse it for the next layer. And I use a small ladle for a dollop. The average soup ladle is 3/4 to 1 cup each. You only need /14-1/2 cup for each dollop. With five dollops you are placing more than one cup on each layer.
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Old 06-09-2015, 11:29 AM   #32
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Thanks, Addie. That's good advice.
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Old 06-09-2015, 11:35 AM   #33
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Our breading has lots of freshly grated parm as well as the amount that goes on the top, but I got to have that melty mozz!

I use both. I top each cutlet with fresh mozz and some parm.
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Old 06-09-2015, 12:07 PM   #34
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Thanks, Addie. That's good advice.
That is stuff you learn when you live in an Italian neighborhood.
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Old 06-09-2015, 01:35 PM   #35
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The recipe I use for moussaka has you pre-bake the eggplant whole for 30 minutes at 375 and then fry/brown in very small amounts of oil. They don't soak up so much oil that way. You prick the skin in several places, rub with olive oil and turn 2-3 times during cooking. If they are really small, I'd probably cut down time to 20 minutes, especially if you want to thin slice.

Since the slices I fry are "naked," as opposed to breaded, I fry them first and then cut the skin off as a) we don't like the texture of it, and b) I apparently have an allergy to something in the skin since it causes my fingertips to go numb and tingle when handling and also causes GI issues with eating skin-on eggplant that I don't have if they are skinned.

If you are breading and don't want the skin, you could probably cut the skin off first and then bread as long as the eggplant is still fairly firm.
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Old 06-09-2015, 01:39 PM   #36
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That is stuff you learn when you live in an Italian neighborhood.
Yep, or even just a nonna, who gave me hints about how to make a better lasagna. Her's was to absolutely die for. One in particular was add some eggs to your ricotta to make it more spreadable and make sure you use S and P and basil (plus any other spices to your taste) in the ricotta, as well as your sauce and meat.
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Old 06-09-2015, 04:11 PM   #37
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Yep, or even just a nonna, who gave me hints about how to make a better lasagna. Her's was to absolutely die for. One in particular was add some eggs to your ricotta to make it more spreadable and make sure you use S and P and basil (plus any other spices to your taste) in the ricotta, as well as your sauce and meat.
Now you are talking my language. One of the tricks a nonna taught me was to alter the layers of the lasagna noodle. Lay the first one in one direction, then the next layer across the pan in the opposite direction. It makes it easier to cut into neat squares. She always made her own noodles. In fact I don't know any Italian grandmother that didn't make them. One of my girlfriend's grandmother was making them and was teaching me. All the time she would mumble about how lazy her DIL was and refused to learn how to make them. All the time I was thinking, "I better pay attention or she will get mad at me." That thought just kept running through my head. But I learned to make them just like hers. She had me making a batch right along with her step by step.
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Old 06-09-2015, 05:02 PM   #38
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When we make lasagna with homemade noodles, there isn't a lot of crisscrossing. We make the noodles as wide as the pasta machine will make them.
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Old 06-09-2015, 08:47 PM   #39
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When we make lasagna with homemade noodles, there isn't a lot of crisscrossing. We make the noodles as wide as the pasta machine will make them.
It makes for quick work of putting it all together. I will have to remember that trick. To this day I make it like she taught me. Gee, I am not to old to learn new tricks. I don't make lasagna for myself, but I do make the noodles for my daughter. I hope she is going to like the size of the new ones.
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Old 06-10-2015, 08:00 AM   #40
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The recipe I use for moussaka has you pre-bake the eggplant whole for 30 minutes at 375 and then fry/brown in very small amounts of oil. They don't soak up so much oil that way. You prick the skin in several places, rub with olive oil and turn 2-3 times during cooking. If they are really small, I'd probably cut down time to 20 minutes, especially if you want to thin slice.

Since the slices I fry are "naked," as opposed to breaded, I fry them first and then cut the skin off as a) we don't like the texture of it, and b) I apparently have an allergy to something in the skin since it causes my fingertips to go numb and tingle when handling and also causes GI issues with eating skin-on eggplant that I don't have if they are skinned.

If you are breading and don't want the skin, you could probably cut the skin off first and then bread as long as the eggplant is still fairly firm.
I'm confused. If I cook the eggplant whole, I can't imaging being able to slice and peel it.

I would think it would be too soft.

I don't like the skin either. Thankfully, it's easy to peel just using a regular old peeler.

I marinated the peeled, raw slices in spaghetti sauce, then baked them until softened.

It worked pretty good, but a few slices were too soft to easily pick up.

I'd prefer to be able to bake it whole, but I'd still peel it first unless you have a TNT way you could share.

I like the idea of just baking it first, so could you please elaborate? TIA
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