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This summer has been such an amazing time filled with family, because my sister is married!! This past weekend on the 17th, she tied the knot, and I couldn't be happier for her! From planning her bridal shower to helping her through the wedding planning process, and standing by her side as her Matron of Honor, I couldn't have asked for a better sister & best friend.

With all of our family being together for all of the bridal events and wedding planning, it made me think how truly grateful I am to have such a close-knit and loving family. We would chat & joke about things we all did as a kid (without our parents knowing...haha!), family vacations, and talk about how thankful we are for how our parents raised us and passed along certain family traditions and traits.

Now there's totally the crazy sides of every family--(we're a Sicilian & Puerto Rican mix), but let me tell you, we got the best of both worlds. We tan well, we're passionate and we get all of the good food...and I'm pretty sure that the food is the best part of it all.

Growing up, we'd always be at my Grandparent's house and my grandmother on my Mom's side would always have a huge spread of food--no matter the occasion. Of course, there would always be leftovers, and there was one specific thing my sister and I would always fight over to see who would get the last of it...the Italian Fried Eggplant. It was and still is our favorite, and with each holiday or family dinner, we still pile our plates high full of eggplant, because no one can make it like my Grandmom.

We've all tried for years & years, but somehow we could never get it right. I'm also not the best cook in the world, so that could have been part of it. However, through all of the wedding planning with my sister, it got me thinking, how awesome would it be to figure out and update my Grandmother's recipe and give it as part of my sister's wedding gift?!

Through several phone calls with my Mom & Grandmom, we finally figured out the recipe--it's so simple that even I can't mess it up! In fact, it wasn't even written down until I wrote it down just before making it. It's just one of those things my Grandmom just knows how to make.

Today, I want to share this recipe with you, and I also want to share the perfect gifting combination if you are looking for a gift for a bride or groom in your life--or maybe you're looking for something to add to your wedding registry. I've got the perfect wedding gift idea, and your bride & groom will need it to make this delicious family recipe.

I'm sure you've all heard of the brand Calphalon®. Calphalon® has 50 years of commercial-grade stovetop performance, and they make quality cookware that has an elevated & sophisticated design. My personal favorite set from Calphalon® is the Calphalon® Premier™ Space Saving Cookware Set. It saves 30% more space** than non-stacking Calphalon® Cookware items when stacked with like diameter Premier™Space Saving items.

Hover over the image below to start shopping for your Calphalon® Premier™ Space Saving Cookware Set.

I love that you can stack & nest them in any order** due to their space-saving flat glass lids. The metal utensil safe nonstick cooking surfaces makes for easy food release and quick clean up. It's the perfect gift for those just starting out and are limited with space or for newlyweds that want a high-quality set to replace their mismatched ones with!

(**Cookware must have same diameter)

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If you want to give (or receive!) the perfect wedding gift, head on over to Bed Bath & Beyond to purchase this amazing set! If you're a bride or groom, be sure to add it to your registry!

With your purchase of $299.99 worth of Calphalon® products (excludes kitchen electronics) from (during one online transaction), you are entitled to a $50 Bed Bath & Beyond Gift Card! It's a terrific way to add to, build, or complete that cookware set of your dreams!

The Gift Cards are redeemable for the merchandise of your choice either online or in any Bed Bath & Beyond stores nationwide.
Limit one $50 gift card per person.
Valid through 12/31/19. Learn more here!

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Ingredients //

Fried Eggplant

1 Eggplant
Italian Bread Crumbs
Canola Oil
2-3 Large Eggs

Bruschetta Topping

1/4 Large White Onion
1 Medium Tomato
Salt & Pepper
Ricotta Cheese
Parmesan Cheese (Block)

Directions //

Fried Eggplant

1. Using a 10-inch frying pan, turn on the stove to medium heat. Once the pan is warm, add in canola oil, filling the bottom of the pan about 1/4 inch.

2. Skin & slice eggplant.
*Note: This is my first time making this, and I wish I had taken off the skin before slicing. Learn from my mistake!

3. Scramble 2-3 large eggs into a small bowl. Pour Italian breadcrumbs into a small bowl.

4. Dip eggplant slices into the egg wash followed by the Italian breadcrumbs.
Be sure to coat the entire slice of eggplant for the best taste. Place on a plate.

5. Once the pan has reached a mini boil and the oil is hot, carefully place coated slices into the pan.
Flip slices after 2-3 minutes or until the bottom are golden brown.

Once both sides are golden brown, place on a plate with paper towels to soak up the excess oil.

Bruschetta Topping

While your fried eggplant is cooling, prep the topping!
To speed up the cooling process, put them in the fridge.

1. Preheat the oven to 400℉.
This will be for the parmesan crisp.

2. Chop 1/4 large white onion, 1 medium tomato, and 1-2 leaves of basil.  Mix in a small bowl and add a pinch of salt & pepper. Set aside.

2. On a sill pad or parchment paper, grate fresh parmesan cheese into small circles.

3. Place the pan in the oven for 5 minutes or until golden brown & crispy.
Set aside to cool.

Once all of your ingredients have cooled (about 15-20 minutes), it's time to assemble your gorgeous appetizers.

4. On a serving platter, place your fried eggplant.
If you want to get fancy like we did, you can add a balsamic glaze to the bottom of the platter!

5. Add a small spoonful of your bruschetta (onion, tomato, basil) to the center of each slice of fried eggplant.

6. Add a dollop of ricotta cheese on top of the bruschetta.

6. Break a parmesan crisp into a smaller bite-sized piece and stick it into the ricotta cheese.

7. Serve & enjoy!

There you have it! Our Italian family recipe with a twist!

Let me know if you try this recipe & how it turns out!! It's so yummy, and will forever be one of my favorites! Don't forget to stop by or visit to grab the perfect wedding gift, or better yet, add it to your wedding registry!

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