The Fusia/Fuscà Family  

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Eggplant, Tomato and Mozzarella Sandwich

Panino al Parmigiano

Here, the traditional ingredients for eggplant Parmigiano are used to make a tasty panino. For a lighter version, grill rather than sauté the eggplant. The sandwich is delicious made while the eggplant is still warm. You can also marinate the sautéed eggplant with a bit of minced garlic, a few chopped basil leaves and a splash of balsamic vinegar, allowing you to assemble the panino another day.

1 eggplant
2 tablespoons olive oil
Focaccia with coarse salt or focaccia with red onion
1 tomato, sliced
2 thin slices Vidalia onion or other sweet onion
3 oz (90 g) fresh mozzarella cheese, sliced
3 or 4 fresh basil leaves
Salt and freshly ground pepper
Extra-virgin olive oil for drizzling
2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmigiano cheese


Trim the ends from the eggplant and thinly slice crosswise. Discard the end slices that are covered on one side with skin. In a sauté pan over medium heat, warm the olive oil. Add the eggplant and cook, turning once, until tender and golden, 5-7 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to paper towels to drain.

Slice the focaccia in half horizontally. Lay the bottom half, cut side up, on a cutting board. Arrange the eggplant slices on the bottom half. Top evenly with the tomato, onion and mozzarella slices
and the basil leaves. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle the Parmesan evenly over the top. Place the other half of the focaccia on top, cut side down, and press down
firmly with the palm of your hand. Cut the panino in half or in quarters for easier eating and serve.

Makes 1 sandwich