If you want your kids to happily eat their eggplant, serve it in this lovely layered casserole. Our whole family enjoys it. Always a popular potluck item, it's a great company dish, as well. —Carol Mieske, Red Bluff, California
- 1 package (16 ounces) penne pasta
- 2 pounds bulk Italian sausage
- 1 medium eggplant, peeled and cubed
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 can (28 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
- 1 can (6 ounces) tomato paste
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 carton (15 ounces) ricotta cheese
- 4 cups (16 ounces) shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese, divided
- Cook pasta according to package directions. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, cook sausage over medium heat until no longer pink; drain. Set sausage aside.
- In the same skillet, saute eggplant and onion in oil. Add garlic; cook 1 minute longer. Stir in the tomatoes, tomato paste, salt, basil and paprika; simmer, partially covered, for 15 minutes. Remove from the heat. Drain pasta; stir into eggplant mixture. Add sausage.
- Spread half of the sausage mixture in a greased 13x9-in. baking dish. Spread with ricotta cheese. Top with half of the cheese and remaining sausage mixture.
- Cover and bake at 350° for 40 minutes. Uncover; sprinkle with remaining cheese. Bake 5 minutes longer or until cheese is melted. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving. Yield: 12 servings.
Originally published as Eggplant Sausage Casserole in Country Woman January/February 2005, p29
Medium-Bodied Red Wine
Enjoy this recipe with a medium-bodied red wine such as Chianti, Sangiovese, Malbec or Zinfandel.
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