Mother’s Day Brunch at Avocado Grill

Seafood Tower - Avocado Grill - Mother's Day SpecialsDowntown West Palm Beach has seen a resurgence in dining as of late, with trendy eateries like Avocado Grill leading the charge. For chef/owner Julien Gremaud, cooking has been in his blood since he was a wee sprout, developing a passion for the culinary arts from his mother in their St. Tropez kitchen.

   “I was just 14 when I started working as a professional pastry chef,” says Gremaud. “Soon after, with my mother’s blessings, I left France to hone my skills at several of the finest restaurants in the United Kingdom. Without her encouragement, I’m not sure I’d be where I am today.”

   He is parlaying this gratefulness onto all South Florida moms for Mother’s Day, cooking up an array of specials to keep mom apron-free on May 10. With an ode to the sea, Avocado Grill’s seafood tower “for her” will boast six oysters, three jumbo shrimp and a crabmeat cocktail ($40). If mom is in a sharing mood, guests can opt to double the tower portion for $80.

   If seafood is not your thing, the kitchen’s seasonal menu of sharable plates will be available, including one special treat, un-breaded eggplant parmesan, direct from Gremaud’s mother’s kitchen.

Avocado Grill - Un-Breaded Eggplant Parmesan - Recipe for a healthy comfort food alternative

   “My favorite dish my mom cooked for me growing up was a very simple eggplant parmesan,” says Gremaud. Keeping true to his farm-to-table, locavore-driven food, this fresh take on eggplant parm is a healthy alternative to the breaded and fried version served at so many establishments. And when paired with another Mother’s Day special, roasted prime rib au jus, you’ll have a meal to remember.


Enjoy a healthy alternative to the classic Mediterranean comfort food, eggplant parmesan, with Chef Gremaud’s recipe here.

Un-Breaded Eggplant Parmesan

Serves four

  • 3 large eggplants
  • 2 14.5 oz. cans of stewed tomatoes
  • 1 6 oz. can of tomato paste
  • 4 tablespoons of freshly chopped parsley
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon of dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon of ground black pepper
  • 6 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1/3 cup of finely diced onion
  • 1/2 cup of white wine
  • 1/2 cup of mozzarella
  • 1/2 cup of gruyere
  • 1/2 cup of parmesan

Preparing the eggplant

  1. Peel and slice the eggplant.; generously salt.  
  2. In a draining pan, place the eggplant and apply weight (a bag of rice should suffice), and drain for 12 hours. Rinse off salt and pat eggplants dry.
  3. Pan sear in olive oil until light brown; place eggplant on paper towel to drain excess oil.

Marinara sauce

  1. Sweat the onion and garlic. Add oregano and pepper, stir. Add the tomatoes and the rest of the ingredients, minus cheese. Cook at a low temperature for an hour and a half.


  1. In a baking dish, apply a layer of eggplant, then a layer of marinara, then layer cheese, repeat to build layers.
  2. Bake for 45 minutes at 325 degrees until golden brown.


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