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Saturday, April 26, 2014

Eggplant Lasagna

I love making and eating lasagna...having said that, I also love to try new and different ideas and this was definitely new and different.  There are basically three separate steps to putting this together.  The first step is cooking the eggplant.  I used two medium-sized eggplant and kept the slices whole instead of cutting them in half.  Once you have the eggplant cooked, move on to step two, the ricotta filling.  Here are the ingredients you will need:

1 tub of ricotta
fresh chopped parsley
garlic powder
onion powder
salt and pepper
dried chopped onion
Parmesan cheese

As you can see, I don't list measurements because the filling is something you need to keep tasting.  If I had to guess, I'd say I added about ½ tsp of the garlic and onion, probably ½ cup of chopped parsley and about a cup of Parmesan cheese.  Once it is all mixed together, try it to make sure you taste all the flavors.  If not, add more!  Now for step 3....building the lasagna.  Feel free to use whatever sauce you would like.  I used my old standby sauce which I have included below.

Simmer 1 can of stewed tomatoes, 1 stick of butter and 1/2 - 1 whole Vidalia onion for about 30 minutes.  When the onion is nice and tender, use a hand blender and puree.  Add salt and pepper to taste along with some Parmesan cheese.  That is it!  Pure tomato flavor....

Begin by covering the bottom of your pan with sauce.  Place a layer of eggplant over the sauce.  Add spoonfuls of ricotta, the sprinkle with any blend of shredded cheese.  Top with sauce, then repeat the layers.

I like to end with some of the ricotta exposed on top.  Bake in a 350 degree oven for 30-45 minutes.  Depending on how thick the lasagna is, you might need to cook it longer (check with an instant-read thermometer to make sure it is hot all the way through).  If you need to cook it longer, cover with a piece of foil to prevent the top from drying out.

It looks really nice when it cooks!

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