Eggplant Parm Soup

Recipe courtesy of Jeff Mauro
Total: 30 min
Active: 30 minYield: 4 servingsLevel: Easy

8 cups (2 quarts) prepared tomato soup1 Parmesan rind
1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
2 large eggs, beaten
2 cups Italian-style breadcrumbs
Salt and freshly ground black pepper1 medium eggplant, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
Vegetable oil, for frying
8 slices whole milk mozzarella
2 tablespoons fresh basil, cut into chiffonade

Put the soup in a medium pot, add in the Parmesan rind and bring to a slight simmer.

Set up a standard breading station with the flour, eggs and breadcrumbs in separate shallow bowls. Lightly season each station with salt and pepper. In batches and using a spider or slotted spoon, dredge each eggplant cube in flour and shake off the excess; dip in egg and let the excess drip off; and then coat in breadcrumbs. Set aside on a wire rack.

Heat 1/2 inch of oil in 2 large straight-sided saute pans over medium heat. Working in small batches, fry the eggplant pieces, turning once, until golden brown, about 4 to 5 minutes a side.

Preheat the oven to broil. Ladle the soup into individual ovenproof crocks on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Cover each crock with 2 slices of mozzarella. Broil until golden brown and bubbly. Top each crock with several fried eggplant cubes and some basil chiffonade.

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