Eggplant Lasagna

Eggplant Lasagna

I got a DM recently from my friend Pete in California. He had made his sweet girlfriend my eggplant lasagna recipe for her birthday. I didn’t even remember that I had the recipe on my site; he said it turned out great and she loved it but that the recipe could use a little love. I found it and made it again just for this site, which is something I rarely do, but I got to reminisce in the process and that, along with the fact that I had dinner for my kids for three nights straight, was well worth it. 

I played all three season of sports in high school and would come home from practice with a wolf-like hunger – I would ask “what’s for dinner” before I’d say hello. The bottom line is, what’s better than a big plate of Italian food when you’re starving? And cold? You’re probably not cold but we keep our house at a very low heat temperature. 

Anyway  – this recipe is fairly basic but the eggplant steps it up a notch. My kids have yet to notice that it has eggplant in it at all but like I like that their little palates are getting a taste of this nightshade veggie I rarely make. It makes an 8×8 amount but is extremely easy to double for a 9×12 amount. Also, there’s a bit of a kick so if your family doesn’t like heat, omit the crushed red pepper. 

Eggplant Lasagna

2 lb. eggplants, peeled and diced (this was 2 medium globe eggplants)

1/4 c. olive oil

1/4 tsp. black pepper

1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes

1/2 tsp. kosher salt

2 tsp. minced or pressed garlic 

2 c. plus 1/4 c. canned tomato sauce, divided 

Filling

16 oz. ricotta cheese

1 1/2 c. grated mozzarella cheese

1 egg

1/2 tsp. kosher salt

1/4 tsp. black pepper

1/4 c. chopped fresh basil

1/4 c. + 2 tbsp. grated Parmesan or pecorino romano cheese, divided

6 no boil lasagna noodles

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Heat olive oil in nonstick skillet over medium high heat. Add eggplant, pepper, pepper flakes and salt. Saute, stirring occasionally, until almost completely soft.

2. Add garlic and stir until fragrant, about 3 seconds. Reduce heat to low and add 2 c. of tomato sauce (reserving the remaining 1/4 c.) Stir and let the mixture gently simmer on low heat while you make the filling.

3. In a medium bowl, stir egg into ricotta cheese until completely mixed. Add salt, pepper, basil, 1/4 c. Parmesan and 1 c. of mozzarella cheese.

4. In an 8×8 pan, spread a layer of eggplant/sauce mixture (a third of the mixture). Top with two noodle sheets. Spread noodle sheets with half of the ricotta mixture.

5. Repeat sauce, noodles, and the rest of the ricotta. Top ricotta with with remaining sauce, and two more noodles. On top of noodles, spread remaining 1/4 c. sauce. 

6. Top with remaining 1/2 c. mozzarella and two tbsp. parmesan. Top with greased foil, and bake for 30 minutes.

7. Remove foil and continue to bake until cheese is totally melted, about 5 minutes longer.

8. Let lasagna sit at least 15 minutes before slicing and serving. Will be okay in the fridge for several days. If freezing, let cool to room temp, cover with plastic wrap, then tightly with foil. Will freeze for several months.

 

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