Julius is a little prankster. We have suspected for a while that he is a prankster, but now that he can move to directly disobey our wishes, we know for sure. His favorite prank? Tricking you into thinking he is playing nicely while he beelines for the dog’s water bowl. Last weekend he was chasing around one of his plastic balls and he kept batting it in the direction of Dany’s water bowl. When he got too close I told him, “Julius! That is Dany’s bowl, don’t touch that!” To which he immediately stopped, looked right at me, smiled a huge grin and then crawled really fast to her water bowl giggling the whole time. I didn’t get there in time so he had time to dip his hands in and splash for a second.
Later that day I was recounting the tale while Will was holding Julius. Julius laughed at all the right parts! I think (but am not positive) that he totally followed the conversation about how he pulled a prank on me. He seemed very smug. What a prankster!
If you want something to be smug about, make this eggplant parm casserole! Will and I have been eating vegetarian twice a week this year, and one of our favorite things to eat is eggplant parm. Unfortunately it’s fairly time consuming. I’ve cut some corners by using one bowl for the egg dipping and crumb dipping and saved hands on time by oven baking the eggplant instead of frying. It is similar to a baked ziti, so you can save time layering in a dish and instead mix it all together and dump into a casserole pan. Unfortunately posting this recipe tonight is sort of pouring salt in my wounds. I meant to buy eggplant from the farmer who comes to my work, and I accidentally forgot! I bought everything else, and now I’m craving eggplant parm…
Lazy Man’s Eggplant Parm
- 4 small or 2 medium eggplants
- 3 eggs
- 1 c Italian seasoned bread crumbs
- 1 c cottage cheese (or ricotta if you prefer)
- 1 24 oz jar sauce
- 1/2 c parmesan
- 1 c shredded mozzarella
Preheat oven to 400 deg F. Slice eggplant into 1/2″ thick wheels if small, or 1.5″x1.5″ chunks if larger.
Scramble eggs in a medium sized bowl. Pour sliced eggplant into the eggs. Toss until completely coated. Pour the excess egg out of the bowl.
Either add the breadcrumbs to the bowl and stir until eggplant is coated, or add breadcrumbs to a large ziplock bag, dump the egg coated eggplant into the bag, seal and shake. Add more crumbs as necessary to coat completely.
Dump eggplant onto a nonstick baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes or until eggplant is browned slightly and soft, flipping eggplant halfway through baking.
Turn oven down to 350 deg F. Transfer eggplant to a large bowl. Add sauce and cheese (reserving 1/4 c of mozzarella) and toss to combine.
Dump into a 8″x8″ baking dish and top with reserved mozzarella. Bake for 30 minutes or until sauce is bubbling and cheese is melting.