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Sicilian Lasagna

casseroles, pastanoodle

12 ounces dried lasagna noodles
--or 1 pound fresh lasagna noodles
2 eggplants
--about 2 pounds total
--cut crosswise into 3/8-inch-thick
-- slices
1 1/2 tablespoon salt
--plus more to taste
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 cups low-fat 2% cottage cheese
2 cloves garlic; peeled
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
--plus whole leaves for garnish
1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
--1/2 ounce
freshly ground black pepper; to taste
2 cups prepared spaghetti sauce
14 ounces canned tomatoes; drained
--seeded and chopped
2 teaspoons red-wine vinegar
1 cup grated part-skim mozzarella cheese

1. In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook noodles until barely tender (8 minutes for dried, 1 minute for fresh). Drain and rinse under cold water. Spread the noodles on clean kitchen towels, cover with plastic wrap and set aside.

2. Preheat oven to 400F. Place rack in lower third of oven.

3. In a large bowl, toss eggplant slices with 1 1/2 tablespoons salt. Add cold water to cover and place a bowl on top of the slices to keep them submerged. Let soak for 5 minutes. Drain, rinse and pat dry.

4. Brush each of 2 nonstick baking sheets with 1/2 tablespoon oil. Spread the eggplant slices on the oiled baking sheets. Bake for 7 to 10 minutes, or until browned on the underside. (If the baking sheets will not fit side by side on the rack, use the middle rack as well and switch the positions of the pans midway.) Turn the slices over and bake for about 7 minutes more, or until browned on the second side.

5. Meanwhile, combine cottage cheese, garlic and cornstarch in a food processor and process until very smooth. Transfer to a bowl and stir in chopped basil and 2 tablespoons of the Parmesan. Season with salt and pepper.

6. In another bowl, combine spaghetti sauce, tomatoes and vinegar. Season the tomato sauce with salt and pepper.

7. Lightly oil a 9-by-13-inch baking dish or coat it with nonstick cooking spray. Smear the bottom of the prepared dish with 1/2 cup of the tomato sauce. Line the bottom with a single layer of noodles. Cover the noodles with half of the eggplant slices. Spread 3/4 cup of the tomato sauce over the eggplant, then sprinkle with 1 tablespoon of the remaining Parmesan. Top with another layer of noodles. Spread all of the cottage cheese mixture over the noodles. Add another layer of noodles and the remaining eggplant slices. Spread with 3/4 cup tomato sauce and sprinkle with the final tablespoon of Parmesan. Finish with the remaining noodles and tomato sauce. Sprinkle with mozzarella cheese.

8. Lightly oil a large piece of aluminum foil or coat it with nonstick cooking spray, and use it to tightly cover the dish. Bake the lasagna for 30 minutes on the middle oven rack. Uncover the pan and bake for 10 to 15 minutes more, or until lightly browned and bubbling. Let stand for 10 minutes. Garnish with whole basil and serve.

Makes 8 servings.

350 calories per serving: 23 grams protein, 7 grams fat (2.9 grams saturated fat). 50 grams carbohydrate; 935 mg sodium; is mg cholesterol; 4 grams fiber.

Busted by: Gail Shermeyer <>

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Contributor: Eating Well, October 1996

Yield: 8 servings

Preparation Time: 0:00

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