Beef and Eggplant Casserole
- 3 tbsp olive oil, divided
- 2 eggplants, thinly sliced
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 lb extra lean ground beef
- 3/4 cup marinara sauce
- salt and pepper to taste
- About half a bunch of fresh basil, leaves chopped
- 1 cup grated parmesan
- 1 cup grated light mozzarella
Adapted from notenoughcinnamon.com
Preheat oven to 350F.
Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. When hot, add 1 tbsp olive oil and cook eggplant slices for about 5 minutes on each side and set aside.
Cook them in batches and add some olive oil when necessary.
While eggplants are cooking, prepare the beef mixture.
Heat another skillet over medium heat and add 1 tbsp olive oil.
Cook garlic for about 1 minute (do not let it brown),
then add ground beef and break it into pieces with a wooden spatula. Cook for about 5 minutes and add marinara sauce.
Stir well and cook another 5 minutes.
Season with salt and pepper.
Remove from heat and add basil.
Drain excess liquid to make sure you don't end up with a soggy casserole.
In a baking dish (I used a square baking dish), arrange one layer of eggplant, one layer of beef mixture and one layer of parmesan cheese. Repeat (eggplant, then beef, then parmesan) and finish with a layer of eggplant.
Top with mozzarella cheese and bake for 25 minutes or until cheese is golden brown and starts to be crispy.