Monday, July 9, 2012

Lighter Eggplant Parmesan

Happy Meatless Monday!!

This is the recipe that led me to pick up some eggplant at the farmer's market.  I figured that if I was going to try eggplant I should dump a bunch of cheese on it.  How bad can that be?  It was pretty dang good.

The one thing I was missing in this recipe was some different texture.  I think in a traditional Eggplant Parmesan the fried eggplant adds some crispiness to the dish.  Since I don't need to eat fried eggplant covered in cheese I'll stick with this lighter version.

Lighter Eggplant Parmesan:
(adapted from Skinnytaste- 8 WW pts)

1 large eggplant (2 lbs)
1 tbsp olive oil
12 oz fat free ricotta
1/4 cup + 2 tbsp Pecorino Romano
1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
1 medium egg
2 cups reduced fat mozzarella
3 cups tomato sauce
1 yellow tomato, seeded and roughly chopped or a hand full of small tomatoes
1 small white onion, diced

Slice the eggplant into 1/4 inch thick slices. Lightly salt the slices and put in a colander to release excess moisture for about 1/2 hour. Lay on paper towels to soak up any extra moisture.

Preheat oven to 450°. Brush eggplant lightly with olive oil on both sides and place on cookie sheets. Bake for 20-25 minutes, turning half way through until eggplant is golden brown.

In a medium bowl combine ricotta, egg, parsley and 1/4 cup of grated cheese.

In a 9x12 baking dish, put a little sauce on the bottom of the dish and put a layer of eggplant to cover the bottom of the dish. Top with 1/3 of the ricotta cheese mixture, mozzarella cheese and sauce. Add 1/3 of the chopped tomatoes and onions.  Repeat the process twice with more eggplant, vegetables, and cheese.  Top with sauce and the mozzarella cheese and the remaining grated cheese.

Cover with foil and bake until cheese is melted and everything is bubbling, about 30 minutes at 400°. Remove foil and bake an additional 8-10 minutes. Take it out of the oven and let it sit about 10 minutes before cutting.

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