2 tbsp olive oil
2 onions, finely chopped
5 cloves garlic, crushed
2 tbsp fresh thyme leaves
⅓ cup tomato paste
¾ cup white wine
1.25kg vine ripened tomatoes, chopped
1 cup basil leaves
1 cup plain flour
1½ cup Panko breadcrumbs
1¾ cups finely grated parmesan cheese
1 large eggplant, sliced into 5mm rounds
3 eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup vegetable oil
1½ cups grated mozzarella
Mixed leaves, to serve
Basil leaves, to garnish
To make tomato sauce, heat oil in large saucepan over a medium heat. Add onion. Cook, stirring, for 5 minutes or until tender. Stir in garlic and thyme. Cook for 1 minute. Add tomato paste. Cook for 30 seconds. Add wine and reduce by half. Add tomatoes. Bring to boil, reduce heat and simmer for 25 to 30 minutes, until rich and thick. Stir in basil.
Preheat oven to 180˚C. Season flour in a bowl. In another bowl, combine crumbs with ½ cup parmesan. Coat eggplant in flour, then egg, then crumbs. Heat oil in large frying pan over a medium heat. Fry eggplant in batches, for 2 minutes each side, until golden.
Grease a 10 to 12-cup ovenproof dish. Mix remaining parmesan with mozzarella. Spoon 1⁄3 of sauce over base of dish. Top with half the eggplant and cheese. Repeat with 1⁄3 sauce and remaining eggplant. Finish with remaining sauce and cheese.
Bake 25 to 30 minutes, until golden and bubbling. Serve with mixed leaves and garnish with basil.