19 December, 2017
Eggplant Lasagna – Gluten Free – Delish
Did you ever wonder what no noodle, veggie, lasagna tasted like? Did you even care? I didn’t either. When I was a little kid our neighbor, Mrs. Paparella, used to mind me while my mom was at work. I would watch her cook. I loved everything she made, but, her lasagna was the best. I never would have imagined, in my wildest dreams, that I would ever eat and like it without those wide lasagna noodles in it.
Gammy, learned to love lasagna too. From the first time I took her to an Italian restaurant and she stole some off my plate. Well a few years ago she learned she had to go gluten free and I would make her a batch with those gluten free rice lasagna noodles and a separate traditional batch for me. She didn’t like the rice noodles. I googled lasagna gluten free and saw a recipe where noodles were replaced with eggplant. We tried it and I stole some off her plate. Wow, I liked it and that became the only way I make it now. I’m still true to Mrs. Paparella. The meat, the cheeses, (she said, “Ya gotta use at least 4 different kinda cheeses”) the sauce, how to bake it properly, etc. But eggplant instead of pasta lasagna noodles.
First let’s chop a medium sized onion and 6-8 cloves of garlic. Put the biggest frying pan you own on the stove at medium high. Add 2 tbsp. (or eyeball it) of olive oil. Add the onions and let them just begin to get translucent then add the garlic. Put the chopped beef in and break it up with a spatula or pancake flipper.
About a tsp. of salt, a tsp. of black pepper and a pinch of red pepper flakes. Continue to break up the meat and sausage chunks so you have a kinda “chunckless” mixture browning up in the pan. Keep turning occasionally as it browns. Pre heat the oven to 500deg.
Cut the ends off the eggplants and slice them into about 3/8″ slices.
Spray some olive oil on 2 cookie sheets. Lay the eggplant slices out on the sheets and spray them with the olive oil. Sprinkle them with salt and pepper. Turn them over and do the other side.
Take them out when they start to get brown and reduce the oven to 350.
Then finish up with another layer of everything and top it off with Mozzarella. Moisten the top of the mozzarella with a very thin coating of sauce to keep it from browning. You want it soft and creamy. Drizzle with a very little bit of olive oil. Give it a good coat of grated parmesan cheese. Sprinkle with some dried basil and oregano.
Cover it with aluminum foil with the foil tightly wrapped around the edges of the pan. Bake it for a half an hour and remove the foil then bake it for about another 15 minutes or until the top is looking like you want it to. Hey, you’re the cook so you decide how you want it. Serve it up! With a good chianti or valpollicello or maybe some barolo, mmm, and some hot outa the oven homemade bread
Now ya got a lot of eggplant lasagna left. Put it in the fridge overnight.
The next day cut it into whatever size portions you want and put them in zip lock bags in the freezer.
Talk about a great quick and easy weeknight dinner. Just heat up the servings in the microwave with a little sauce and grated parm on them.