So, I must first apologize to Em for not getting a post in last week for Weight Watcher Wednesday! I have no idea where the week went. I almost missed the day this week. I must start planning these posts ahead of time. Anyway, after a visit back to Columbus over the weekend, a gift of garden fresh veggies helped to inspire this week's recipe. My dear friend Ellen would not let me get out of town without taking a bag of goodies from her garden. In the bag were these beautiful eggplants, as well as a huge bunch of rainbow chard. Thank you El! After searching the Internet, I found this yummy lasagna which called for eggplant. The rest of the veggies I had in my garden, and the noodles I found stashed away in the pantry, so no trip to the store was needed, what a bonus! I have a few recipes in line for the chard, will have that up in the future.
This recipe is on the Weight Watchers site. It is easy to make, but a bit time consuming, and is a dish from the series, "Cook Once, Eat All Week". The dish came out alright for the first go, I would give it about a B-. I will definitely make adjustments the next time around.
On the positive side, it was very tasty and low in points/calories, since there is no ricotta and egg filling. If you are looking for a comforting vegetarian dish, this fits the bill. It can also be made ahead of time. Another plus, I use the no-boil noodles, which saves so much time. You can definitely use a different assortment of veggies in this recipe, nice if you have an abundance in the garden or need to empty the fridge. I roasted the vegetables and then let them cool completely before processing. You could do this step a day ahead. I like the way the pureed veggies are used instead of a traditional sauce. Gives the dish more flavor and depth.
Adjustment that I will make next time, I will use more veggies, don't be stingy. The eggplants were probably a bit small and I should have use a few more. I did not have any Roma tomatoes on hand, so I used an assortment of heirlooms from my garden which were just fine. I think it needed a bit of herbs added, basil or oregano would have been nice. I would even add a splash of dry red wine to the puree. Lastly, I would suggest covering the dish with foil for the first 30 minutes of the baking time and them uncover the last 10 minutes to let the cheese brown. I tried baking it according to the recipe, and had to cover it because the cheese would have burned to a crisp, and the top layer of pasta was a bit too dry. All in all though, this is a very nice recipe to make when you have a hankering for lasagna.
Roasted Vegetable Lasagna
Points value: 5
3 medium raw eggplant, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
3 medium sweet red pepper(s), chopped
4 small tomato(es), plum, seeded and chopped
4 medium garlic clove(s), peeled and chopped
2 tsp olive oil
1 tsp table salt, or more to taste
1/4 tsp black pepper, or more to taste
9 serving dry no-boil lasagna noodles, 9 noodles,
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
3/4 cup part-skim mozzarella cheese, shredded
Preheat oven to 425°F.
In roasting pan, combine vegetables and garlic with olive oil. Bake until vegetables are tender, stirring occasionally, about 20 to 25 minutes.
Place half of vegetables, salt and pepper, and 1/2 cup water in food processor and process until smooth.
Spoon 1/2 cup of vegetable purée into bottom of a 9 X 13-inch baking dish.
Place three noodles over purée. Top with 1/2 cup of purée, 1/2 of remaining vegetables, 2 tablespoons of Parmesan cheese and 1/4 cup of mozzarella cheese. Repeat layers and then top with remaining 3 noodles, purée and cheese.
Bake until bubbly, about 40 to 45 minutes.I would suggest covering with foil for the first 30 minutes and then uncover the last 10 so the cheese will brown a bit. Slice into 6 pieces and serve.