Fruit and vegetables are expensive in Japan but not for me! Turns out living in the middle of nowhere can come with a bagful of free perks. In particular, a bag filled with eggplant and asparagus. So, how does one single lady eat the same freakin’ veges for a week without pulling out her hair?! Panko is the answer. When I saw Panko (Japanese bread crumbs) at my local supermarket (which btw is the worst supermarket of all time – for example they only have apples and oranges for fruit – dont get me started on every other food category on the planet) I remembered the chefs at my previous restaurant job using Panko to coat arancini (delicious deep-fried risotto balls). Sick of stir-frying, curryfying, pastafying (without the pasta) my vegetables, I opted for ze crunch factor. Because errybody loves crunchy food, especially yours truly but I can’t say the same for oil. So, I came up with this simple vegetarian recipe for y’all.
And by “for y’all”, I mean for myself but you can try it too.
a little olive oil
1 free-range egg
dash of milk
salt and pepper
About 1/2 cup or more of Panko or regular breadcrumbs
1 tbsp dried parsley
vegetables of choice: I used 2 eggplants and some asparagus
Preheat oven (I used a toaster oven) to 180C
Then set up a coating station with:
an oven-proof dish greased with a little olive oil
egg, milk, salt and pepper mixed together in a small bowl
and a wide bowl containing your panko and dried parsley
Roll veges first in egg mixture, then panko and lastly, place on greased dish
Bake veges for about 20 or so minutes, turning every so often – keep a close watch as Panko can burn quite easily.
I served mine with a warm napoletana sauce (just 100% canned peeled tomatoes, heated in a frying pan with no oil)