Eggplant Lasagna with Sausage, Mushrooms, and Spinach

 

I LOVE summer. I REALLY love the local Farmer’s market. I stopped by our neighborhood market on the way home from work the other day and picked up some fresh veggies. Giant eggplants for $1 apiece? Don’t mind if I do.

Ok, so I officially have zero experience cooking with eggplants. I figured I could dream up some kind of low-carb comfort-style grub, so that’s what I did. This was a complete experiment, and I’d have to say it was a success!

Apologies in advance: I took a photo while I was putting this concoction together (see below), but once it came out of the oven I was so excited to eat that I completely forgot to photograph the finished product! Ugh. I snagged the above photo from the interwebz because I scarfed mine…Garfield-syle.

 

EGGPLANT LASAGNA WITH SAUSAGE, MUSHROOMS, AND SPINACH


Ingredients

1 large eggplant
29 oz marinara sauce
1 package frozen spinach
1.5 lb mild Italian sausage
1 package sliced mushrooms
15 oz ricotta cheese
2 eggs
4 cloves garlic, pressed
1 tsp Italian seasoning
Salt & Pepper
1 ¼ cups shredded parmesan cheese
Extra virgin olive oil

Layering…

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 F.
  2. Quarter eggplant and slice into ½ inch thick strips. Arrange on cookie sheets and drizzle with a small amount of olive oil, salt and pepper.
  3. Place eggplant in the oven for 15 minutes, flipping halfway through. Make sure it doesn’t’ burn! Remove from oven.
  4. Defrost spinach in the microwave and press through a strainer to remove excess water.
  5. Brown Italian sausage in a saucepan. Add in mushrooms for the final 3-4 minutes. Remove from heat.
  6. Combine ricotta cheese, ½ tsp salt, ½ tsp black pepper, 2 eggs, 1 tsp Italian seasoning, and 4 cloves garlic in a mixing bowl. Stir until thoroughly combined.
  7. Grease 9×11 baking dish and pour a small amount of marinara on the bottom. Line bottom with eggplant strips.
  8. Layer ½ the spinach, followed by ½ the sausage/mushroom mixture, ½ the ricotta mixture, and a layer of marinara and parmesan cheese.
  9. Add another layer of eggplant strips and repeat step 8.  Finish off with a generous amount of parmesan cheese on top.
  10. Tent with aluminum foil and bake for 25-30 minutes until heated through.

 

Photo credit, #2

 

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