I am a very bad blogger. I’ve abandoned my website for what seems to be months. Years. First, I was on vacation in Chile (highly recommended for food and wine lovers!). Then I was severely ill and avoiding anything to do with the kitchen altogether. Then we adopted the cutest little mutt I’ve ever seen. (Her name is Mussels – isn’t she just precious?)
Not that I’m making excuses or anything. I just haven’t stepped foot in the kitchen. Until now.
This Eggplant and Sausage Casserole is kind of a mutt itself – a mix between Eggplant Parmesan, Lasagna and Strata. It’s warm and cheesy and perfect for winter. The bottom layer is a kind of sausage bread pudding covered by a thin layer of eggplant. That’s topped with some marinara sauce, then more eggplant. As with any casserole, the crowning glory is a layer of shredded cheese and breadcrumbs. Pop in the oven until it smells delicious and dinner is ready.
Honestly, I wasn’t expecting much from this recipe. Sure, I thought it would make a good weeknight meal, but I was surprised by how much I really liked it. It gave me a homey, pajamas on a Sunday afternoon kind of feeling. Like Chile, it’s highly recommended.
2 small eggplants, very thinly sliced
1 stale baguette, cut into cubes
4 sausages of your choice, casings removed (I used artichoke and olive chicken sausage)
1/2 cup milk (skim is ok)
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. freshly ground pepper
1 tsp. dried oregano
2 cups marinara sauce
2 cups mozzarella
1 cup breadcrumbs (homemade preferred*)
Preheat your oven to 350°. Brown the sausage in a skillet, breaking up and large pieces. Toss the browned sausage with bread and place in a greased lasagna pan (mine is 9″ x 13″).
In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, salt, pepper and oregano. Drizzle evenly over the sausage and bread mixture.
Add a layer of eggplant over the sausage mixture. Cover with all of the marinara sauce. Add an additional layer of eggplant. Cover the eggplant with mozzarella and breadcrumbs.
Bake for 45 minutes or until the eggplant is tender and the cheese is melted and browned.
Makes about 6 servings (if accompanied by a large green salad).