Italian Sausage and Grilled Eggplant Lasagna

A terrific low carb meal… Italian Sausage and Grilled Eggplant Lasagna is easy to put together.. from scratch or taking shortcuts… it’s all good!
I make a crock pot of tomato sauce.. and use the leftovers for recipes like this…. Here is a super easy crock pot recipe for tomato sauce…. Click here.
As I mentioned.. you can take shortcuts.. commercial jarred tomato sauce works in this recipe just fine.
I grilled my eggplant on my Cuisinart grill.. you can do it in a grill pan on the stove or even in the oven.  To do it in the oven.. preheat the oven to 400 .. cover a baking sheet with non-stick foil and follow the instructions basting the slices in olive oil and seasoning with a bit of salt and pepper… roast until slightly yellow in color and the slices begin to soften.
I didn’t peel the eggplant… sometimes I do peel it.. it’s just personal preference… this time the skins were tough.. either way works.. do whichever you prefer.
Be sure to give the shredded mozzarella on top of the casserole a quick spritz of olive oil cooking spray.. it helps melt the cheese into gooey goodness.
You can use either mild (sweet) or hot Italian sausage. 
I hope you try this delicious meal!

Recipe:  Italian Sausage and Grilled Eggplant Lasagna
All you need to do:
1 pound Italian bulk sausage, cooked and crumbled
2 medium sized eggplants, sliced ¾ inch thick (peeling is optional)
Olive oil
Salt and pepper
Tomato sauce  *See TIPS
1 container (15 oz) ricotta cheese
1 egg, slightly beaten
¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 tables spoons chopped fresh parsley
¼ teaspoon garlic powder
2 cups shredded mozzarella
Olive oil cooking spray
All you need to do:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Spread some tomato sauce (just enough to coat it) in the bottom of a 9 x 13 baking dish.  Set aside.

In a medium bowl, combine the ricotta cheese, egg, Parmesan cheese, chopped parsley and garlic powder.  Set aside.
Reserve ½ cup of sauce for the top of the casserole.  Set aside.
Mix the remaining tomato sauce with the cooked Italian sausage.  Set aside.
Using a pastry brush, brush olive oil on both sides of the eggplant slices and season with salt and peer.  Grill them on a hot grill or grill pan (See TIPS for oven method) until they are slightly yellow and slightly soft.
To assemble the casserole:
Lay a layer of grilled eggplant on the bottom of the baking pan (over the little bit of sauce on the bottom).
Spread the Italian sausage mixture over the egg plant.  Spread the cheese mixture over the meat.  Lay the remaining eggplant on top of the cheese.  Spread the reserved tomato sauce over the eggplant.  Sprinkle the mozzarella over the entire top of the casserole.
Give the top of the cheese a quick, light spray of olive oil cooking spray.
Bake in the preheated oven for 40 minutes ot until the casserole is bubbly and cheese has melted and browned slightly.
Allow to stand about 10 minutes before serving.

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