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Cheesy Eggplant-Orzo Casserole

Yield 8 servings (serving size: 1 1/2 cups)
Try dolloping the ricotta cheese on top of the eggplant instead of mixing it with the tomato sace. It's like eating little pillows of cheese.

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons sun-dried tomatoes, packed without oil, chopped
  • 1/2 cup boiling water
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 6 cups diced peeled eggplant (about 1 1/4 pounds)
  • 1 1/2 cups diced onion
  • 1 cup diced red bell pepper
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup diced tomato
  • 3 cups cooked orzo (about 1 1/2 cups uncooked rice-shaped pasta)
  • 1 1/2 cups fat-free ricotta cheese
  • 1 cup tomato juice
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
  • 1 (8-ounce) can no-salt-added tomato sauce
  • 1 cup dry breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/3 cup pine nuts

Nutrition Information

  • calories 353
  • caloriesfromfat 27 %
  • fat 10.3 g
  • satfat 2.6 g
  • monofat 4.2 g
  • polyfat 3.1 g
  • protein 17.9 g
  • carbohydrate 51.3 g
  • fiber 3.8 g
  • cholesterol 11 mg
  • iron 3 mg
  • sodium 345 mg
  • calcium 224 mg

How to Make It

  1. Preheat oven to 350°.

  2. Combine sun-dried tomatoes and boiling water in a small bowl; cover and let stand 10 minutes or until soft. Drain, and set aside.

  3. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add eggplant, onion, bell pepper, and garlic; saute 5 minutes. Add diced tomato; cook 2 minutes. Add sun-dried tomatoes, orzo, and next 4 ingredients (orzo through tomato sauce); stir well. Spoon orzo mixture into a 13 x 9-inch baking dish. Combine breadcrumbs, cheese, and pine nuts; sprinkle crumb topping over orzo mixture. Cover and bake at 350° for 30 minutes or until thoroughly heated. Uncover and bake an additional 10 minutes or until lightly browned.