*Originally posted January 3, 2013
There is a lot…..ok may be some….ok may be just the people who watch The Chew…. of hype about going meatless on Mondays. I go meatless on a lot of meals, mostly because I live on a preschool teachers salary in the Boston area. I really don’t mind, since I can satisfy my protein cravings with quinoa, which is much cheaper than meat, although treating myself to a steak is amazing.
I would have had a hard time giving up couscous if it were not for quinoa. This dish is very versatile- you could substitute the eggplant for zucchini, or you could change up the sauce and cheese.
- 1 eggplant, sliced into thin rounds
- 2 15 ounce cans of diced tomatoes
- Roughly 3 Cups cooked quinoa (about 1.5 dry boiled in 3 cups of water)
- 1/2 large onion, diced
- 1/2 bell pepper, diced
- 1 pound ricotta cheese
- 1/2 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp red pepper flakes
- a dash of dried thyme
- Olive oil
- Salt and pepper
- Parmesan cheese
Place eggplant on a baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil and salt. Bake at 350 for about 10 minutes.
Heat olive oil in a saucepan over medium-high heat and add red pepper flakes, chopped onion and pepper. Cook for a few minutes until veggies begin to soften. Add canned tomatoes and spices, and simmer for 3 minutes. Add in cooked quinoa and simmer for 3 more minutes to thicken.
Begin layering casserole: Grease a 9X9 pan and spoon a layer of sauce onto the bottom. Next add the eggplant, followed by a layer of ricotta. Repeat layers one more time, and top with remaining sauce. Top with grated parmesan, and bake at 350 for 30-40 minutes.