Three Cheese Baked Ziti with Eggplant

Upon inspection of the pantry/fridge tonight, we found: pasta, sauce, goat cheese and an eggplant. After a quick trip to Super Target, we ended up with this little creation. BEWARE: It makes a LOT. We’re going to be eating this for a loooong time.

THREE CHEESE BAKED ZITI WITH EGGPLANT

ziti1

1 Small Eggplant
¼ C Olive Oil
1- 13.25 oz Pkg Whole Wheat Penne
1- 19.5 oz Pkg Turkey Italian Sausage, casings removed (I used Jennie-0)
1 C Part-skim Ricotta
1 Egg, beaten
1 Tbs Italian Seasoning
1- 24 oz Jar Pasta Sauce*
½ C Goat Cheese, crumbled
2 C Shredded Mozzarella Cheese (I used the 2%)

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 350.

2. Chop eggplant into 1” dice. Spread on rimmed baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil. Bake for 15 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool.

3. Prepare pasta according to package instructions. Drain.

4. In a skillet, brown Italian sausage. Once cooked through, drain off excess fat.

5. In a large bowl, combine beaten egg, ricotta and Italian seasoning. Stir until smooth.

6. Add cooked turkey sausage, pasta sauce, pasta and goat cheese to the bowl. Stir to combine. Add salt and pepper to taste.

7. Spray 9×13 baking dish with nonstick cooking spray (if you have a large enough casserole dish, that would work, too). Spoon pasta mixture into baking dish, smoothing top with a spoon. Sprinkle with mozzarella and bake for 30 minutes.

Pre-cheese, pre-baking:

preziti

And final product:

ziti2

*I actually ended up using about 1/4 of another jar of pasta sauce that we had leftover in the fridge in addition to the 24 oz jar. The first sauce was super watery and kind of bland. I think if you used a higher-quality sauce initially, 24 oz would be plenty.

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This entry was posted in July 2009 and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

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