Ben has accused me of sneaking veggies into everything I cook. I baked chocolate chip cookies this week, and the first words out of his mouth were: “Is there something green in these?”
Eggplant Lasagne
The man has a point. This may come as a surprise, since as this post went to press more than 35% of the dishes in my recipe index were desserts. Make no mistake: I adore sweets and would happily subsist on cookies and pie, if biology would allow (plus, desserts are just so fun to blog about!). With my affinity for confection, however, comes a deep devotion to every mother’s burden and every toddler’s nemesis: VEGGIES.
Lovely eggplant: A color and flavor fit for royalty.

Call me mad, but I am mad about veggies. Roasted Brussels sprouts are a “treat” I make once a week in the late summer and fall. Spring means asparagus, prepared any way I can divine: grilled, roasted, in a hash, in risotto, in crepes. This summer, I’ve packed the kitchen (and our tummies) with corn and zucchini.
Ben doesn’t share my fondness for veggies, but being the cruel wife that I am, I insist that we eat them every evening. I take particular pleasure in sneaking them into unexpected territory. Ben was half way through a pan of zucchini brownies before I told him the “secret ingredient.” No wonder he asked about the cookies!
 Ben sees sliced eggplant. I see…
…Yummy, healthy lasagna noodles!

 

Adding veggies is an instant way to up the health-factor of any meal, especially when you swap them for less-nutritious ingredients. Today’s post does just that. Even non-veggie lovers will fall for this flavorful EGGPLANT LASAGNA.
Veggie lovers and loathers alike, rejoice!
In place of noodles, I have layered Italian breadcrumb-encrusted and roasted slices of fresh eggplant. Heavy ricotta is swapped for cottage cheese, its leaner (and more affordable) second cousin. Borrowing from the Greeks, I warmed the flavors with cinnamon and all spice, two key ingredients in moussaka, a traditional Greek dish that is very similar to an eggplant lasagna. Thow in feta for additional Greek flair, spinach for its super-food status, some lean turkey bacon just because its delicious, and you have yourself one luscious lasagna.
Three types of cheese + bacon. You know this is going to be good.
Veggie lovers and loathers alike will rejoice in EGGPLANT LASAGNA, and everyone receives a stealth-serving of his “Five a Day.” Now aren’t you sneaky?
Eggplant Lasagna
A cheesy vegetable party that will feed a crowd.
Or Ben.

Eggplant Lasagna

Eggplant no noodle lasagna recipe. Has Greek flavors that make it a bit like moussaka. Uses turkey bacon but can easily be made vegetarian.

Ingredients

For the Eggplant:

  • 3 medium eggplant — cut crosswise into 1/8-inch-thick “disks”
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 2 teaspoons canola oil
  • 2 large egg whites
  • 2/3 cups breadcrumbs — (whole wheat if possible)
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper

For the Lasagna:

  • 6 strips turkey bacon — cooked and cut into small pieces
  • 10 ounces frozen chopped spinach — thawed with most of the water pressed out
  • 2 cups non-fat cottage cheese — (16 ounces)
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon all spice
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 jar prepared spaghetti sauce — (24 ounces)
  • 1/3 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 450°F.
  2. To prepare eggplant, arrange the slices in a single layer on paper towels. Sprinkle 1/2 tsp. salt on both sides of eggplant. Let stand 15 minutes and pat dry.
  3. Combine water, oil, and egg whites in a shallow bowl. Place the breadcrumbs, oregano, basil and pepper in another shallow bowl. Dip eggplant in egg white mixture, then dredge in breadcrumbs.
  4. Place breaded slices on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Bake for 24 minutes or until eggplant is golden and crisp, turning after 12 minutes. Cool on a wire rack.
  5. Turn oven down to 350°F.
  6. In a large bowl, combine spinach, cottage cheese, cinnamon, all spice, and black pepper.
  7. Coat a 9x13 in. casserole dish with cooking spray. Spread 1/3 of prepared sauce in the bottom. Cover with 1/3 eggplant slices. Top with 1/3 of spinach-cottage cheese mixture. Sprinkle with 1/3 of the shredded mozzarella.
  8. Next, repeat layers: Top with half of the remaining sauce, half of remaining eggplant slices, half of remaining cottage cheese mixture, then half of remaining mozzarella.
  9. Now, sprinkle on a layer of bacon and feta cheese. Top with remaining eggplant, remaining cottage cheese, remaining sauce, and remaining mozzarella.
  10. Bake for 35 minutes, until cheese is toasted and lasagna is reasonably set. Let cool for 10 minutes, serve, and enjoy!
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American, Italian, Mediterranean
Keyword: Eggplant Lasagna, Healthy Italian Food

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