Roasted Eggplant Parmigiana

I did it again.

 

I planned out a quick, easy and delicious dinner.

 

And I was foiled.

You see, I had an eggplant in the refrigerator. And a delightful Rocco DiSpirito cookbook calling my name to make eggplant rollatini.

 

{He makes me happy, can you tell?} But you can't make eggplant rollatini without ricotta cheese. You just can't. It's against the law.

And I came home to Shaun slicing up the eggplant for me, only to realize that we were straight out of part-skim ricotta. Fail.

So I had no choice but to improvise. Or go out to the store. The latter of which seemed extremely unappealing. I'm so glad that we are collectively lazy. Because out of my lazy improvisation came a dish that I'm pretty excited about. I actually dreamed about it last night.

In fact, I hope I forget the ricotta again next time. Because this dish was so easy and a perfectly light weeknight dinner. No frying, no breading. All you need are some basic ingredients, a loaf pan (or a small baking dish), and if you're lucky, someone else to slice up the eggplant for you.

 

Roasted Eggplant Parmigiana
1 eggplant, ends removed, peeled, and sliced lengthwise (8-10 slices)
1 1/2 C marinara sauce (I made Rocco's How Low Can You Go sauce, any of your choice works!)
3/4 - 1 C mozzarella cheese
1/4 C parmesean cheese
Basil, dried or fresh
kosher salt + pepper
cooking spray

Preheat your oven to 450 degrees.

On a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, lay out the eggplant, spray lightly with cooking spray and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast for 10-12 minutes (longer if your slices are thicker) until tender. Let cool slightly.

Meanwhile, spray a loaf pan with cooking spray and line the bottom with a bit of the sauce.

 

Layer half of the eggplant, followed by more sauce, basil (I used dried but fresh would be amazing too), half of the mozzarella and half of the parmesean cheese.

 

Repeat the last step with the remaining eggplant, sauce, basil, and cheeses. My layers were pretty thin, but if you want a thicker dish, add more layers of eggplant (perhaps slice up 1 1/2 to 2 eggplants).

 

Bake for 12-15 minutes until the cheese is bubbly and the edges are browned.

We had ours alongside some toasted rye bread. Mm-mmmm good.

So that's the story of my accidentally, fantastically easy dinner. No breading or frying. Roasting is the new frying, haven't you heard? :) Oh and this dish made about 3 servings - 1 for Shaun and me last night, and 1 lunch for Shaun today. For more, just slice up more eggplant in a bigger dish! Could it be simpler? So what do you think? When was the last time you were foiled in the kitchen? Did you prevail?

 

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