Aubergine and Ricotta Bake

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Spent the morning at the park with Rory but after an hour had to come home to warm up, gosh it’s cold. Luckily Rory is still loving his reusable stickers and found lots more uses for them – on the window, collecting them in a pot and sticking them on our cabinets. His obsession did give me a little free time, so I finally got around to making Marji and family a meal since they’ve just had a gorgeous new baby boy and have enough things to worry about. I had a whole load of fresh ricotta, some aubergines and a couple of courgettes so decided to do this hearty aubergine and ricotta bake and just added a layer of courgettes. Listened to the brilliant Alabama Shakes album whilst doing it. In the afternoon we had a huge play date at ours. Mel is frantically busy packing up all of their belongings for the big move to England on Friday (boo hoo) so Mia came around to play with Rorykins. Lora, Oliver, baby Maeve, Marji, Gray and Baby Luke also joined. It was a fun afternoon but the highlight for the babies was probably all enjoying a whoopie pie from One Girl Cookies that Lora brought. Fun times. Thanks to Lora for the great photos of the children as I was too busy serving the cakes!

Ingredients

  • 2 large eggplants (1 to 1 1/4 pounds each), sliced lengthwise 3/4 inch thick
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for baking dish
  • Coarse salt and ground pepper
  • 1 container (15 ounces) part-skim ricotta cheese (1 2/3 cups)
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano (or 2 teaspoons dried)
  • 1 jar (16 ounces) store-bought marinara sauce (2 cups)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Arrange eggplant slices in a single layer on two rimmed baking sheets. Brush lightly on both sides with oil; season with salt and pepper. Roast until eggplant is tender and golden, turning halfway through, 25 to 30 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, whisk together ricotta, eggs, 1/2 cup Parmesan, oregano, 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Brush an 8-inch square baking dish with oil.
  3. Lay a fourth of eggplant slices in bottom of prepared dish; spread with half of marinara sauce. Top with another fourth of eggplant; spread with half of ricotta. Repeat layers, ending with ricotta; sprinkle with remaining 1/2 cup Parmesan. Bake until bubbling and golden, 20 to 25 minutes. Cool 10 minutes before serving.

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