2egglightly beaten (optional - can use just egg whites also)
for the marinara
Fill large sauce pan with water, leaving room for tomatoes, and bring to boil.
Wash tomatoes and using a paring knife, score a small "X" on the skin of each one.
Place tomatoes in boiling water for 3-4 minutes, depending on their size. Remove from water when skins begin to shrink back or split.
Place tomatoes in colander and rinse with cold water.
Skins can be readily peeled and discarded.
Place peeled tomatoes in large sauce pan over medium heat and stir in wine, sugar, and salt and then cover pan.
Place olive oil in large skillet over medium heat. Add onions and peppers and saute until translucent.
Add sauteed vegetables, garlic, basil, and oregano to tomatoes and simmer in covered sauce pan over medium heat. Reduce heat to low, stirring occasionally until read to serve or store for future use.
for the eggplant
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
Wash eggplants and then slice into ¼ inch slices
Place sliced eggplants into colander
and sprinkle salt over the slices
Allow to drain for 15 minutes.
Brush baking sheet with olive oil being sure to coat entire surface.
Pat slices dry with paper towel if they are wet.
Dredge slices in egg white and breadcrumbs and place on baking sheet.
Bake for 15 minutes, remove from oven and flip each slice. Return to eggplant to oven and bake an additional 15 minutes or until brown and desired level of crispness is achieved.
Serve immediately and top with marinara.
Garnish with fresh sweet basil.
Experience and conventional wisdom tell us that any tomato based sauce will have a more developed flavor if allowed to slowly cook over several hours, or perhaps is prepared a day ahead and allowed to meld while sealed and stored in a refrigerator. I made this just a couple of hours before it was served and it was still wonderful. Marinara freezes well. Carefully sealed and stored in the freezer, your tomato sauce can add a taste of freshness well into the sub-zero days of winter. Use your imagination to flavor the sauce. If you are out of fresh herbs, don't be afraid to add some dried Italian seasoning or herbs from your spice cupboard.