For those of you who are off pasta or what something a little different – this is a great dish I invented using some basic vegetables, my secret tomato sauce and mozarella cheese! – So easy to make and so tasty that you really forget that their is actually no pasta in the entire dish!
4 large eggplants, cut lengthwise
15 large portabella mushroom caps, cleaned
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp. oregano
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 tsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. dried basil
2 lb. bag frozen chopped spinach
2 lb. bag frozen chopped broccoli
32 oz. ricotta cheese
1 cup parmesan cheese
2 Tbsp. oregano
2 lbs. mozzarella cheese, shredded
2 lbs. cheddar cheese, shredded
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
In a small bowl, combine the olive oil, oregano, salt, garlic and basil. Using a pastry brush, generously coat the sliced pieces of eggplant on both sides and the inside and tops of the portabella mushrooms. On separate baking trays which have been greased with the olive oil mixture, lay out the eggplant and portabella mushrooms. Place in oven and bake for 10-15 minutes for the mushrooms and about 8 -10 minutes for the eggplant or until they have become soft.
While the eggplant and mushrooms are baking, prepare the cheese mixture. In a large mixing bowl, combine one half of the chopped spinach, one half of the chopped broccoli, ricotta cheese, parmesan and 2 Tbsp. oregano. Mix well.
In a smaller bowl, combine the rest of the spinach and broccoli. Set aside. When the eggplant and mushrooms have finished baking and have cooled somewhat, assemble the pasta free lasagna. Slice the mushrooms lengthwise. In an 11 x 17- inch disposable aluminum pan, lay out a layer of the baked eggplant in the same way you would lasagna noodles when preparing lasagna. Using your hands, spread a layer of the ricotta cheese mixture over the eggplant layer. Take the combined spinach and broccoli which was set aside and sprinkle a layer of that over the ricotta cheese layer. Then lay a layer of sliced portabella mushrooms. As the final layer, sprinkle a mixture of cheddar and mozzarella cheese over the mushrooms. Repeat the entire process one more time, starting with the eggplant.
When you have finished assembling, place lasagna in the oven and bake for about an hour. Remove from oven, and let cool for about 25 minutes. Put a lid on the aluminum tray (to weigh down the lasagna) and wrap pan entirely with aluminum foil. Freeze overnight. When ready to serve, slice the frozen lasagna into sections. Place each piece separately in the oven topped with marinara sauce. Bake in a 375 degree oven for about 15 minutes or until heated through.