La Parmigiana – Baked aubergine layered with tomato sauce and mozzarella


Marlena Spieler

Cook & Prep Time

2 h 30 min



La Parmigiana – Baked aubergine layered with tomato sauce and mozzarella

La Parmigiana, a baked tray of layered aubergine, savoury tomato sauce, and melting mozzarella, is not only one of Naples’ most wonderful dishes, but also an emblem of Italian cooking throughout the world.


  • 1 kg aubergines, sliced lengthways ½ cm thick
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 clove of garlic, chopped
  • 30 ml extra virgin olive oil
  • 400g canned organic whole peeled tomatoes, smashed with a fork
  • 300 ml oil, for shallow frying
  • 250g mozzarella, shredded or torn up
  • 70g grated parmesan
  • 10-12 leaves of basil
  • salt and pepper


Step 1

Sprinkle the aubergine slices with salt and leave in a colander with a plate on top; the weight will help draw out the juices. Leave for about an hour, then squeeze the bitter juice out of the slices, rinse, and pat dry.

Step 2

Meanwhile, prepare the organic tomato sauce: soften the onion and garlic in 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil; cook a few minutes then add the crushed organic tomatoes and half the basil. Continue cooking for 15-20 minutes until the sauce thickens. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Step 3

Heat the frying oil in a pan over a medium-high heat, then add the aubergine slices in a single layer. Shallow fry on both sides for a few minutes until the slices are light golden. Remove from the pan with a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper. Repeat until all the aubergine slices are fried.

Step 4

Preheat the oven to 180°C.

Step 5

Assemble your Parmigiana: ladle a little of the tomato sauce into the bottom of the baking dish, then arrange alternate layers of aubergine, tomato sauce, a sprinkling of grated parmesan, a little basil and the slices of mozzarella. Repeat until all the ingredients are finished. Finish off with a layer of sauce and a sprinkling of grated parmesan.

Step 6

Bake in the preheated oven for 30-40 minutes. Let it rest for at least two hours then serve, garnished with the remaining fresh basil.