Roasted Eggplant Parmesan

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How’s this for a hot, hearty, healthy and delicious way to end the day? Especially because you can make it the day before, and just heat it up when dinnertime rolls around. Serve with a crisp salad and crunchy French bread for a meal that can’t be beat!

(Makes 4 servings)

 

2 medium eggplants (about 2 pounds)
1 tablespoons coarse salt
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup ricotta cheese
¾ cup mozzarella (divided)
1 tablespoon chopped parsley
1 tablespoon chopped basil
1½ cups marinara sauce (divided)
2 tablespoons parmesan cheese

Heat oven to 450°F. Trim stems and ends from eggplant and peel, leaving several 1-inch wide strips of peel intact. Cut the eggplant lengthwise into ½-inch thick slices and place in a colander. Sprinkle with salt and allow to sit for 15 minutes. Rinse the eggplant under cool water, drain thoroughly and pat dry. Toss the slices in the olive oil and place on 2 baking sheets. Bake 20 minutes until golden brown. Let cool. Reduce oven heat to 350°F.

In a small bowl, combine ricotta cheese, ½ cup mozzarella cheese, parsley and basil. In an 8 x 8 baking dish, spread ½ cup of marinara sauce on the bottom of the pan. Place a layer of eggplant slices in the dish and spread ½ cup of the cheese mixture on top; repeat, layering 2 more times. Top with remaining (1 cup) marinara sauce and sprinkle the remaining (¼ cup) mozzarella cheese and parmesan cheese on top. Cover loosely with aluminum foil. Bake at 350°F for 30 minutes; remove aluminum foil and bake another 10-15 minutes or until cheese is melted and slightly golden brown. Cool slightly and serve.

Do ahead: Cover the unbaked Roasted Eggplant Parmesan with aluminum foil and refrigerate up to 24 hours. You may need to bake covered 10-15 minutes longer or until bubbly. Uncover and bake another 10 minutes or until slightly golden brown.

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