Pasta is one of those things you can’t go wrong. I mean, you have to be a very special person to really screw up pasta. Especially if you buy the sauce from the store. Which is why I love pasta dishes. I know that as long as I mix together pasta with tomato sauce and some cheese, my boyfriend will positively gush over it. And then eat the whole thing. Which is why I cut him off when half the lasagna has been eaten. Lasagna can be easy to make, but it is a bit time consuming, and damned if I won’t have at least two days of leftovers for myself to take to work!
Anyway let’s get started:
- Lasagna Noodles: Depending on the size of your casserole dish – mine fits 3 noodles per layer. I make it with only 3 layers so i only need about sheets (I always make an extra just in case one breaks but they never do) Want to make it healthier? Go for the whole wheat. Also, I’ve also heard you can substitute the noodles with thinly sliced zucchini but I have yet to try that!
- 6-7 Thin slices of raw eggplant
- 1 jar of tomato sauce + 2tbs of tomato paste
- dried basil/oregano/salt & pepper
- 1 whole onion
- 1 large red pepper/2 very small ones
- 12 oz low fat ricotta
- 1/2 cup mozzarella
Preheat the oven to 350F.
Edit: Cover with foil and cook for 40 minutes so the eggplant gets totally cooked through. Then, take the foil off and turn the oven on grill for a few minutes so the cheese browns.
Start with slicing the veggies. If you’re making your own sauce, then make the sauce before. Just as long as the sauce & veggies are all cooked and mixed before you cook the noodles. The red pepper should be like little match sitcks. Eggplant should be thin slices, but they won’t go in until the end so set them aside.
Heat up some olive oil in a pan, and then throw all the veggies (zucchini, red pepper and onions) in. Cook until soft.
When the veggies are cooked, pour your sauce in with the tomato paste and a little bit of water. You’ll want enough to make 1 layer of veggies w/sauce in the dish and then a thin layer of sauce on the very top. The first time I just used a 12oz jar of sauce and added water plus extra seasonings to make up for it being watered down and it still wasn’ t enough, which is why I say add tomato paste just in case it’s not enough. If the sauce tastes good to you, then turn it off and let it sit while you boil the noodles.
For the noodles, follow the instructions in the box.
When the noodles are done, pour the boiling water out and run cold water over them.
Cover the bottom of your casserole dish with a thin layer of sauce:
Make your first layer of noodles, then a thicker layer of sauce with veggies. Put your eggplant ontop of the sauce, then cover the eggplant with sauce. Make sure there’s some sauce left in the pan for another thin layer (a little thicker than the one above)
After your eggplant is covered in sauce, make another layer then cover that with your low fat ricotta:
Add a final layer of noodles, then sauce. I had a little leftover ricotta so I mixed it with the sauce:
Sprinkle mozzarella cheese on top and stick it in the oven for half hour until the cheese is totally melted and has turned golden brown on the edges. (Ok maybe that’s a little more than a sprinkle. But what was I going to do? Leave just a tiny bit of cheese left in the bag!? I had to use the rest!)