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
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
4 cloves garlic, pressed
1 tsp Italian seasoning
Salt & Pepper
1 ¼ cups shredded parmesan cheese
Extra virgin olive oil
- Preheat oven to 375 F.
- 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.
- Place eggplant in the oven for 15 minutes, flipping halfway through. Make sure it doesn’t’ burn! Remove from oven.
- Defrost spinach in the microwave and press through a strainer to remove excess water.
- Brown Italian sausage in a saucepan. Add in mushrooms for the final 3-4 minutes. Remove from heat.
- 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.
- Grease 9×11 baking dish and pour a small amount of marinara on the bottom. Line bottom with eggplant strips.
- Layer ½ the spinach, followed by ½ the sausage/mushroom mixture, ½ the ricotta mixture, and a layer of marinara and parmesan cheese.
- Add another layer of eggplant strips and repeat step 8. Finish off with a generous amount of parmesan cheese on top.
- Tent with aluminum foil and bake for 25-30 minutes until heated through.