Thursday, August 14, 2008

Eggplant Parma-Lasagna

What do you do when you have an eggplant, leftover noodles, and half a containers of ricotta sitting in the fridge? You make eggplant parma-lasagna of course!

Okay, yesterday's creation is really more like eggplant parma-baked ziti — since I used bell-shaped pasta — but that name doesn't have quite the same ring to it.

I have to give my friend Michael partial credit for this dish. He recently told me about an order of eggplant Parmesan he ate in which the eggplant was cut into cubes rather then rounds before being breaded and fried.

This application was actually a huge time-saver. Instead of dunking each piece into the egg then coating with breadcrumbs, I simply poured the egg over the cut up eggplant. I then dropped all of those pieces into the bowl of breadcrumbs, tossed everything around, and dropped them into a pan to quickly sautéed the cubes in olive oil. Instead of flipping each one individually, I shook the pan around a few times, cooking each cube until it was golden brown all over.

For the first time every, assembling the eggplant was easy-peasy!

Making use of my leftovers, I mixed the cooked eggplant, precooked pasta, and ricotta with a tomato sauce that I quickly whipped up. Since I didn't have any mozzarella on hand, I used grated Gouda instead. The whole mess was dropped into a baking pan, covered it with foil, and baked it for 35 minutes at 375. Then I removed the foil and cooked for a few more minutes.

The results were fantastic. Next time I might even plan to make this dish!

(I'll post the official recipe later today!)

No comments: